Medications for Addiction Treatment

Group Therapy and Medications for Addiction Treatment

Once a dependent drinker has recovered from physical symptoms, it will be necessary to address the psychological dependence which has developed. If the alcoholic is able to commit to no longer drinking, then it will be necessary to remove all alcohol from the home and office. In doing so, this will help to remove unnecessary temptation. He or she can also let friends and family know they plan to stop drinking and ask them not to drink around them as a result. It will also be necessary to avoid areas where alcohol is served, such as bars and clubs. The person can maintain recovery by avoiding past friends with whom he or she drank heavily.

By practicing healthy habits, such as a healthy diet and regular exercise, a former alcoholic can have greater odds of addiction recovery. The addict should surround themselves with positive peer groups and activities to resist the temptation of alcohol. Perhaps volunteering can help to provide a more positive outlook. Continuing to take advantage of treatment options such as Alcoholics Anonymous can also prove helpful. The recovering alcoholic can also seek out other alternate forms of relaxation.

Recovering alcoholics can also assist themselves by avoiding triggers that have caused drinking in the past. Of course, such people should still anticipate they will be offered a drink sooner or later. In this case, it will be best to be polite but assertive in saying no. Your personal reasons for not choosing to drink do not necessarily need to be discussed. In the event that cravings to drink become overwhelming, the alcoholic should call a sponsor, loved one, or other trusted individual. The individual should also remind themselves of the drawbacks of the drinking, as opposed to just the temporary positives that result.

Group Therapy

Though there are multiple options for group therapy for alcoholism, the most widely recognized is undoubtedly Alcoholics Anonymous or AA. In such a program, the alcoholic will be encouraged to select a sponsor to guide them in achieving sobriety. This is a person who has been able to make AA work for their needs successfully in the past and receives personal satisfaction in helping others do the same. One of the benefits of AA is that it is widespread throughout the nation, with a wide range of meeting locations and times.


A number of different medications have been approved to help ease the treatment process for alcoholics. The longest-running option in the medical field is Antabuse or Disulfiram, which works by spurring unwanted side effects if the person drinks even a small amount. Side effects include heart palpitations, nausea, and flushing of the skin. There is also Naltrexone, which inhibits the pleasure that an alcoholic usually receives from drinking. Certain brain receptors are blocked, which assist in providing alcohol’s intoxicating effects. This can help those dependent on alcohol to have one or two drinks and not feel anymore is necessary. Campral or Acamprosate is an oral medication that is intended to reduce the symptoms associated with sudden abstinence from alcohol, including agitation and sleeplessness.

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