Alcoholism is one of the most widespread disorders in the world, and in order to treat such a condition, alcoholism counseling is often necessary. Alcoholism counseling can involve a number of different strategies and techniques to help the sufferer overcome the disorder, including support groups, interventions, and even detoxification. Perhaps the most well known alcoholism counseling program in existence is Alcoholics Anonymous, which allows recovering alcoholics and substance abusers to come together to discuss their addictions and work past them in a team environment.
Since alcoholism can often go hand in hand with other addictions, many alcoholism counseling programs are designed to aid the addict in overcoming more than one addiction. Social pressures, however, may prevent the alcoholic from seeking treatment. Stigmatization of alcoholism is a problem for many alcoholics, as is the regularity of social drinking in day to day adult life. An alcoholic must be willing to seek and accept help in order for treatment to be effective. Through group meetings, counseling with professionals, and even meeting with doctors, anyone who chooses to enter an alcoholism counseling program can often get help he or she needs to achieve sobriety. Treatment may go on for as little as a few days, or continually throughout a lifetime.
When attempting sobriety, an alcoholic may suffer from alcohol withdrawal. In this case, his or her alcoholism counseling may begin with detoxification. While this process does not necessarily rid the body of toxins from alcohol as its name suggests, it does help the alcoholic wean him or herself off alcohol either by ceasing consumption altogether or replacing the alcohol with another substance that can be slowly reduced over time. This course of action is not necessary for all alcoholics, but in more severe cases, detoxification may be necessary.
Alcoholism can occur at any age, or within any gender, social class, race, etc. Therefore, alcoholism counseling may need to be tailored to the alcoholic to be most effective. In most cases, similar steps can be taken regardless of the sufferer, with the ultimate goal being the cessation of alcohol consumption and abuse. Signs of abuse may include binge drinking, drinking in excess regularly, changes in mood and appearance, social and interpersonal struggles, tolerance of alcohol and its effects, and withdrawal symptoms when alcohol is not present in the system. Alcoholics generally cannot function normally without alcohol in their systems, which leads to dependence on the substance to perform day to day functions.