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Alcoholism is not a choice. It all starts with a harmless drink with friends. We take our first drink due to peer pressure or the attitude of ‘let’s just try it’! There is a belief that alcohol drinking is considered cool and it helps us to forget our grief. The movies and advertisements try to showcase alcohol drinking as a fun activity.
Let us break the bubble of happiness. Alcoholism is a disease and once you get used to it, withdrawal becomes painful and traumatizing. It cannot be controlled on its own. Only professional help can cure alcoholism but that does not mean you cannot help them temporarily or until the time you take the addict to a doctor.
Symptoms to Look for in an Alcoholic
You can always help a loved one but that is only possible if you can identify whether a person is alcoholic or not. To be sure about alcoholics, you can look for the following symptoms:
- If you notice excessive drinking in someone like he/she drinks more than the usual quantity.
- Someone drinks more than planned. For example, in a party or usual sleepover, a friend or cousin plans to drink one beer but ends up totally sloshed because he/she drank around 8 bottles.
- They start mixing drinks. It started with beer drinking and now have moved to vodka and whiskey.
- Maybe you find yourself or someone else unable to resist alcohol.
- Your attention is always towards drinks and nothing else.
- Sickness after alcohol might make a person lose concentration.
- You are aware that drinking has caused a lot of disturbance in your personal life but still resistance is impossible.
- Relieving yourself from stress or anxiety is the main target of most people who drink. When alcohol is no longer helpful for this but still you find the desperate urge to drink.
- A lot of drinks result in memory loss. You or any loved one might not be able to remember anything that happened during drinking or before drinking.
- They are drifting away from their family life. Alcoholics become violent and start making mockery of their families and other relationships.
- Any jerks, seizures, nausea, shakiness, etc. is countered if someone tries to quit drinking.
If you find any two or three symptoms in a person, this is the first or mild stage of alcoholism. As soon as the symptoms increase the situation becomes adverse. After finding any two or three symptoms make sure you start helping the person before the condition gets worse.
Helpful Measures to Take For Helping An Alcoholic
If you have noticed any symptoms of alcoholism in a person, make sure you help him/her out immediately before the situation gets out of hand. The following steps might aid you for approaching an alcoholic:
How to help an alcoholic?
Let’s find out!
Get knowledge about alcoholism first
Before taking any action, you need to know everything about alcoholism. You can always look for symptoms and then focus on the remedies. Jumping on to a conclusion without any sign or knowledge would result in nothing. An alcoholic can never control the thirst for drinks. Saying one would never end one drink. This is just one symptom. Other symptoms that are mentioned above can help you identify an alcoholic.
Prepare yourself before saying anything
You can never speak to an alcoholic without any prior practice. You will need to prepare yourself before saying anything. There is a chance that you might unintentionally say something stupid and it might anger the patient. Alcoholics are already very compulsive and impulsive because of their excessive drinking habits. Make sure you know what you are saying, avoid saying anything that might become a personal attack or hurt the person’s feelings. Be mature and say rational things without any taunts or sarcasm.
You should also be ready to see violence or cranky responses. Such patients are likely to say every hurting thing. Do not mind any of it because they do not mean what they say. Their senses are not helpful so you should be ready to hear everything.
Be sure about the time and place
Never start any conversation without analyzing the circumstances of the alcoholic. It is necessary that you choose the right place and time before initiating any conversation. A bad time and place will never have a good end.
Show interest while listening to them
After approaching an alcoholic, you need to know that he/she might open up to you. If the person starts talking, just stop right there and listen to their story with complete attention. Show compassion and honesty to them and if they are opening up to you, it is a good sign. Become their perfect listener and give them rational advice or tips once they are done talking.
Do not force to get treatment
Imposing something on anyone is never a good thing. When it comes to alcoholics, forcing them to quit or get some professional help will never have a good end. You need to be really careful while advising anything. Most alcoholics do not want to get any professional help. To make them go to a rehab center is something that you have to make them do maturely. You have to make them realize that a rehab center is necessary for them. enforcement is never appreciated. Never be judgmental. Be neutral and listen to them. Offer them your support if they do not want to consult any doctor.
Listening to an alcoholic is different from intervention. If you are really close to the person, you can be involved like you can plan things out for them, tell them about the consequences, and give reasonable solutions and advice too. Intervention becomes important if the alcoholic resists going to the doctor for help.
Alcoholism is not that hard to cure-all you need to do is initiate and bring changes in the lifestyle. You need to be really keen while observing. You should never ask someone directly. If you find any symptoms make sure you help them out and the best way to do it is by listening to them.
Find out the cause as to why this person is drinking endlessly. Are they depressed? Do they have low self-esteem issues? Hear them out and try to offer solutions.