Falling under the broad gamut of substance use disorder, excess consumption of alcohol also known as alcohol dependence syndrome or simply alcoholism is an entity which is not uncommon in civilized society. Man has used alcohol to attain a state of mind which is at gross variance than his usual self. The consumption of alcohol becomes a disease when one or all of the following occur:
* There is an insatiable urge or need to drink called Craving.
* Non-consumption of alcohol causes the individual to have severe withdrawal symptoms. This scenario is known as Physical dependence. The symptoms which a patient may have because of alcohol withdrawal are headaches, anxiety, delirium tremors, excessive perspiration etc.
* The body attains an ability to withstand higher amounts of alcohol thus forcing the individual to consume higher quantities to attain the “high”. This state is known as Tolerance.
* Last but not the least and the main reason why patients are brought in by their family membersor friends is the Loss of Control which essentially means that after the first drink the individual just can’t stop having more.
With the above history a person is taken by his or her loved ones to the much talked about rehab centers in hopes that a long stint in the surroundings of the institution would enable the individual to get rid of this habit.
Intensive Outpatient Alcohol Treatment
All the rehab centers make an effort to explain the medical and social aspects of alcoholism as well as the protocols (in general) that they would use to “cure” the patient. However, they miss out on certain very important aspects. Maybe its intentional maybe it’s not, but these facts should be known to all who have to visit a rehab center either as a patient or as a patient’s attendant.
They say the numbers don’t lie. As per the estimates, there are a total of 22 million people who are suffering from substance abuse disorders in the United States of America. To prune it down further 12% of the American adult population has the problem of alcoholism. These facts and figures are not usually brought out during the counseling session with the individual and his or her family members. Why? Because this would indicate that the problem is a common one and there are numerous institutions catering to these needy people. Thus, the “elitist” status of that particular institute would be in jeopardy and consequently there could be a dent on their earnings. Just to put everything in perspective the cost of rehab of one person may vary from $20,000 to $ 25,000.
The Training of the Counselors
Who are the people on the grounds that actually are responsible for the entire process? They are the counselors who logically and ethically should be trained in providing necessary services and imparting training to others. Unfortunately, the institutes providing full diploma or degree courses in Health Sciences (Rehab counseling) are virtually absent in the USA. Some so called trained counselors have done a long distance course and lack hands-on training required for dealing with this disorder. The centers obviously would not like to divulge these details for obvious reasons
Most of the rehab centers gloat over the fact that they impart 6 -8 hours of training every day. What they don’t tell you is that most of this time is spent in group sessions and viewing of rehab related audio and video material. What is actually required for alcohol dependenceare numerous one on one sessions which are known to help.
Another thing which these people don’t divulge is the content of these group sessions. Many of these sessions carry with them an underlying tone of humiliation of the individuals who have joined the rehabs sessions causing dropouts.
Last but not the least the rehab centers do not clarify on drop outs and recurrence. Recurrences and dropouts are a part of the entire Treatment for Alcoholism therapy and should be taken into consideration as such and not as a failure of therapy. The centers usually fail to educate the patients and their family members of this important fact.