Alcohol addiction is one of the most aggressive and common addictions since it is a legal substance, and it is also normalized in our society. Fortunately, it is possible to eradicate this vice, but this has to be step by step with the help of experts, as it can cause a severe withdrawal that can even be fatal. If you want to know how to cut alcohol gradually, we give you seven steps to start detoxifying.
Remember that the informationwe have given here is not a substitute for rehabilitation, and if you or someone you know has this problem, controlled recovery and expert opinion are necessary.
Three advantages of quitting alcohol
Alcohol is a substance that mainly attacks the nervous system, liver, and kidneys. Long-term consumption can cause different pathologies and even mental syndromes that have no way of being eradicated. On the other side, stopping drinking alcohol has many health benefits, here we tell you:
- Your mental and emotional stability will significantly improve: Alcohol, like other addictive substances, is known to distort the production of pleasure hormones that release the reward centers of the brain. Thus the emotional state changes and can cause irritability, aggressiveness, and depression. When you stop ingesting this substance, hormones gradually return to their normal production and stability returns.
- It will reduce your body weight: Alcohol is a drink with a lot of calories. To give you an idea: alcohol has more calories than foods prepared with fat, chocolates, creams, or some soft drinks. Besides, alcohol causes fluids to be retained in the body, so detoxifying involves a retained fluid release and decreases body swelling.
- You will avoid liver and heart diseases: Alcohol increases blood pressure, which causes heart problems, such as myocarditis. This drink’s intake also increases the production of gastric acids, which leads to serious pathologies such as stomach cancer or esophagitis.
Motivation and self-esteem are vital when rehabilitating a patient. The benefits of abstinence from alcohol are vast and greatly influence our personal and mental development.
How to know when it’s time to stop drinking alcohol
People who suffer from alcohol addiction do not know when they entered this condition, and it is even common for alcoholics to deny their addiction. That is why a series of characteristics that occur in the transition from non-alcoholic to an alcoholic has been highlighted:
- You begin to notice less memory capacity and less self-control, headache, nausea, and vomiting
- The frequent repetition to yourself that you have it under control, you are not an addict, and you could quit at any time.
- You usually experience some legal problems because of alcohol, like a crash, a fight, etc.
- A feeling of weakness and physical exhaustion due to the increase in blood pressure.
We must inform ourselves and prevent ourselves, to have a knowledge of the problem of alcoholism, and to identify those symptoms that may be presenting in ourselves or people close to us.
How to cut alcohol gradually
Now we go to the main point: How to cut alcohol gradually? Here we give you a series of steps that can significantly help a person, but remember, this is not a substitute for rehabilitation, and professional help is necessary. Without further ado, the steps to follow are:
- Change your relationships. Ultimately, social circles have to be closed. It is common for an alcoholic to associate with people who also like and abuse this substance, so it is necessary to evaluate interpersonal relationships and review which ones are harmful and better to keep away.
- Get help, and don’t try it alone. As we explained above, if not controlled, withdrawal syndrome can be fatal, which is why it is recommended to enter a support community such as alcoholics anonymous, in addition to asking for support from family and friends or receiving outpatient treatment. Suppose this is not feasible, at the least, in that case, you have to go to the doctor to be offered different solutions, such as psychiatric or pharmacological solutions, to try to reduce the withdrawal syndrome.
- Do cleaning. Remove all the alcohol that is in your house. Empty the bottles or give them away, ask for support from those close to you, and at all costs avoid going to get shopping at a place that supplies said substance.
- Don’t have free time. We don’t mean it’s bad to have some free time and do nothing, but for someone who suffers from an addiction, free time is torture. Do some sport, read, learn another language, learn to play chess: in short, take your time to keep the mind occupied while your body is recovering.
- One nail does not pull out another nail. Do not start to develop other vices as a form of distraction; remember that one nail never pulls another nail. Avoid the consumption of addictive substances, gambling, or anything that can generate an obsession.
- Don’t do it all at once. If your dependence is strong, it is essential not to stop suddenly, but instead in small doses to avoid a serious or fatal withdrawal.
- Commit. You must reflect on your life and values all the advantages that you will obtain when you stop drinking, such as a healthy life both physically and psychologically. Also, please make a list of all the negatives that you will say goodbye to when you stop drinking and post it in a visible place in your house. It is also convenient that you read at least once all the negative consequences that alcohol has on your body, you will be surprised to know the number of diseases that exist.
Alcoholism can be avoided, and in the early stages, it is easier to eradicate it. Remember that it is necessary not to do it alone and to seek professional help first since the withdrawal syndrome is extreme. Follow this series of steps together with a more professionalized rehabilitation, and you will be able to get out of this condition. Watch your health.