April 25, 2008

Alcoholism – What Are The Treatments?

Treatment of alcoholism focuses on reducing alcohol consumption. There are differing views on whether alcoholism is a medical or social condition. These different views produce varying treatments.

Most experts acknowledge that many factors contribute to alcoholism. This means that treatment must address all these different issues to reduce the chances of a relapse. One common method is to apply supportive therapy after the alcoholic undergoes detoxification to combat both the medical and social aspects of the disease.


Attending self-help groups with a commitment to abstinence is often a success as well. There are also different approaches that recommend a reduction in alcohol intake as opposed to a sudden abstinence to make the process less dramatic.

How Effective Are The Treatments?

Alcoholism treatments have varied degrees of success. The effectiveness of a program is usually measured by two things- the amount of patients who complete the program, and the amount who relapse. A study by Dr. Mark Willenbring, of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism showed that nearly 100% of patients complete treatments. The figures for relapse show that after one year 30% are still sober, 40% have improved their condition, but still drink heavily, and 25% have relapsed. These figures show that there is room for improvement for the treatment of alcohol, and further research into the contributing factors will enable treatment to be more effective.

How Alcohol Effects Your Family

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