Approaching addiction treatment for an alcohol use disorder should involve some careful thought and planning. Undertaking the monumental task of first getting sober and then learning how to live a life in recovery is not an insignificant one. By anticipating the needs of the individual as he or she progresses through the stages of treatment and recovery, the experience can be less stressful and more fruitful. Making a well thought out alcoholism care plan in advance can help pave the way for a successful recovery outcome.
When Is It Time for Treatment?
Alcohol abuse usually begins innocently enough. Possibly the party atmosphere at college laid the foundation for a future alcohol use disorder. Maybe an individual was using alcohol to self-medicate a mood disorder, depression, or anxiety and it turned into an alcohol addiction. Or it could be that those couple of drinks to unwind after a stressful day simply escalated to alcohol dependency over time. Regardless of how the alcohol problem came to be, there are common signs that an individual needs to seek professional help for it. These include:
- Increased tolerance causes higher alcohol consumption to get prior effects
- Becoming obsessive about having alcohol available, looking forward to drinking, seeking excuses to drink
- Neglecting responsibilities
- Lying about how much you drink, hiding alcohol around the house
- Isolating oneself from friends and family so you can drink
- Experiencing problems at work, loss of a job
- Legal problems, such as DUI
- Negatively impacting relationships
- Alcohol craving
- Want to stop drinking but cannot
- Experience withdrawal symptoms when alcohol is withheld
What Should Be Included in an Alcoholism Care Plan?
Once someone decides to get help for their alcohol use disorder it is helpful to make an alcoholism care plan. In most cases, individuals who have been abusing alcohol have developed malnutrition and other health issues. Planning for recovery should begin with a physical examination to determine the degree to which the alcoholism has impacted one’s health. Blood panels can show how much liver damage has occurred as well as other general health markers. Here are some tips for care planning during and after rehab:
- Supplements can help restore nutritional balance. Vitamin deficiencies, such as thiamine or vitamins A, E, or D, and mineral deficiencies like calcium and magnesium, are common in alcoholics.
- Hydration is another area to address, as dehydration is a common feature among alcoholics, especially when going through detox and withdrawal. Restoring electrolytes and fluids is an important care element.
- Diet is intrinsic to rebuilding strength and stamina, so planning to clean up one’s diet will help the brain and body be restored to wellness. A diet that is high in lean proteins and fresh vegetables, seeds, and nuts, with reduced exposure to sugary, high-fat processed foods, is optimal.
- Regular exercise is as important for physical health as it is for emotional wellbeing. Getting regular cardio workouts several times per week will help improve mood, benefit overall fitness, and improve sleep quality.
Depending on the degree of the alcohol use disorder, detoxification may be the first necessary step of recovery. If so, an alcoholism care plan should include a medically supervised detox and withdrawal program. Detoxing from alcohol can be risky, so it is best to be monitored by trained medical detox personnel who carefully monitor vital signs and will help ease the withdrawal symptoms with medications.
Treating an alcohol addiction requires a multi-modal approach that blends traditional evidence-based therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, with group therapy, family counseling, couples counseling, holistic activities like yoga, massage therapy, and mindfulness training, and naltrexone medication-assisted treatment.
The Importance of Aftercare in the Alcoholism Care Plan
Recovery does not end with the discharge papers from the rehab program, however. On the contrary, the real work of recovery begins the day you complete the program and need to navigate the real world once again. For this reason, aftercare is an essential component in alcoholism care planning.
Aftercare, or continuing care, is simply the means by which sobriety is maintained outside of rehab. Three important aspects of aftercare include:
- Sober living housing
- Ongoing outpatient therapy sessions
- Participation in a 12-step or similar recovery community
Careful planning for recovering from an alcohol addiction will yield the most successful long-term results. Making that effort will pay off handsomely.
Capo By the Sea Provides Optimal Alcohol Rehabilitation
Capo By the Sea is a leading luxury rehab in Southern California, situated in a tranquil beach community. Capo By the Sea will see to providing the most comprehensive alcohol care plan for during and after treatment for alcohol addiction. Our top-tier clinical team is committed to helping individuals get sober and then stay sober using an integrated approach to addiction treatment. For more information about the program, please contact Capo By the Sea today at 888-529-2114.