Alcohol Abuse Treatments
By Kayla Loibl | Last Edited: December 21, 2020 | 4 Sources
Stop Binge Drinking
Alcohol Abuse Treatments
The severity of your drinking problem determines what treatment you need….
There are many who believe that there is only one course of action to take if you have a problem with drinking and that is attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. Nothing could be further from the truth.
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Alcoholics Anonymous is, as the name implies an organization set up to help and support those alcoholics who want to stop drinking and stay stopped. In fact you are never really accepted by other members until you have accepted the fact that you are an alcoholic and affirm this fact every time you speak at one of the meetings.
This has one unfortunate consequence; binge drinkers who do not actually meet the formal definition of alcoholism feel pressured into admitting they are alcohol dependent even though they are not, thus labeling themselves as alcoholic. A label that can never really be shaken off.
This is the great flaw in alcohol dependency treatment in the U.S. and elsewhere, the fact that other ‘styles of problem drinking’, and more specifically binge drinking are not catered for by the treatment industry, or at least that is how it appears.
There are, in fact, ways of dealing with problem drinking that do not involve Alcoholics Anonymous. We are not saying that AA is bad in any way, rather that it is a support group for alcohol dependents not those requiring help with binge drinking.
Before reading further, we would recommend that you take an alcoholism test to determine whether your drinking habits are symptomatic of alcoholism or not.
Alcohol abuse Treatments
Treating Binge Drinking
Binge drinking can be a symptom of alcoholism but it is not alcoholism of itself. For a full discussion of binge drinking please refer to our page, ‘What is Binge Drinking’.
Treatment for binge drinking can take a number of forms (it all depends on the severity of the problem):
- Kudzu: Kudzu is a herb used extensively in Chinese medicine for over a thousand years. Recent studies have shown that it is effective in reducing the amount of alcohol binge drinkers/alcohol dependents consume in one sitting. For more on this read Kudzu and alcohol.
- Support Groups: There is a support group, Moderation Management that helps binge drinkers try and control their alcohol consumption. Abstention from alcohol is not the ideal, rather controlled and safe drinking. For more on this read, Moderation Management.
- Harm reduction: Although binge drinking is not alcoholism, it does create many health problems. HARM reduction is an online (free) support system that helps those wishing to reduce the harm alcohol does to them. It is based on the belief that abstinence from alcohol is unachievable for many, so the next best thing is to reduce the harm alcohol does to the individual. Read HARM reduction to discover more.
- The Sinclair Method: The Sinclair Method, utilizing the anti-craving drug Naltrexone, reduces the cravings that binge drinkers and alcoholics typically experience once they drink. Although, the subject of much debate this method does seem to work (at least for most) Read The Sinclair Method for more.
- Self-Help E-book: ‘Stop Drinking Alcohol’ is an e-system devised by a former problem drinker Rahul Nag. In his system he starts by getting the problem drinker to assess his/her drinking, and then decide the drinking goal they would like to achieve. Based on this he then provides the tools and strategies to achieve the goal. E-mail support is included. To learn more about this system go to ‘Stop Drinking Alcohol’.
There are alcohol abuse treatments for binge drinkers and problem drinkers. Some may suit you better than others, it is important to keep trying to find a solution even if one particular method does not work for you. Binge drinking can be halted/controlled, however, if it isn’t there is a likelihood that it could develop into alcohol dependence.
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Lead Writer/Reviewer : Kayla Loibl
Licensed Medical Health Professional
I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. Read More