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How Family Support Can Help With Alcoholism

Alcohol abuse puts families through many hardships, making it crucial to involve loved ones in recovery. 

This allows them to be part of the solution, strengthening family bonds and leading to stronger, healthier relationships.

Let’s discuss the prevalence of Alcohol Use Disorders in America and explore how family support can help with alcoholism and recovery!

What is Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)?

Alcoholism or Alcohol Use Disoreder is a condition wherein individuals can’t control their alcohol intake, causing negative impacts on their personal, professional, and social lives.

AUD ranges from mild to severe, based on criteria such as frequency and amount of alcohol consumption, withdrawal symptoms, and impact on daily functioning.

What are the Signs of Alcoholism?

Signs of alcoholism and AUD can vary depending on the severity but generally include:

  • Difficulty controlling alcohol intake (drinking more than intended or for more extended periods)
  • Neglecting responsibilities because of drinking
  • Continuing to drink despite negative consequences
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when attempting to reduce or stop drinking
  • Craving alcohol
  • Developing a tolerance (needing higher amounts of alcohol to feel the same effects)

Co-Occurring Disorders

Alcoholism can co-occur with other mental health disorders like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder.

Health Problems Associated with AUD

Heavy drinking can lead to various health problems, including liver damage, cardiovascular disease, and digestive issues.

It is also associated with an increased risk for certain cancers.

Additionally, alcohol use disorder increases the risk of automobile accidents because of impaired coordination and functioning.

The Impact of Alcoholism on Families

Addiction can be debilitating not only for the individual ensnared by it but also for their loved ones. 

Alcoholism, in particular, can have a profound impact on the person suffering from this disorder as well as those in their immediate circle.

The consequences of alcoholism on families can include:

  • Emotional distress: Family members often experience anger, fear, guilt, and shame because of their loved one’s addiction.
  • Financial strain: Alcoholism can lead to job loss, reduced income, and increased medical expenses, placing a financial burden on the family.
  • Relationship problems: Trust and communication within the family may be damaged because of the individual’s alcohol abuse.
  • Increased risk of abuse: Alcoholism can lead to increased physical, emotional, and sexual abuse within the family.
  • Negative impact on children: Children of alcoholics are more likely to experience emotional, behavioral, and academic problems and may be at a higher risk of developing AUD.

How Family Support Can Help with Alcoholism

Family support can be crucial in helping an individual overcome alcohol addiction. Some benefits of family support for alcoholism recovery include:

  • Improved motivation: Family support can encourage and motivate the individual to seek help and maintain sobriety.
  • Emotional support: Family members can offer a safe and nurturing environment where individuals feel comfortable sharing their struggles and emotions.
  • Accountability: Family involvement can help hold the individual accountable for their actions and assist them in making positive changes in their life.
  • Education: Family members can learn about addiction and effective coping strategies to support their loved ones during recovery.
  • Reduced risk of relapse: Studies have shown that individuals with strong family support systems are less likely to relapse during recovery.

Tips for Alcoholic Family Support

  1. Acknowledge that you cannot control the alcoholic’s behavior.
  2. Focus on setting healthy boundaries and expectations for yourself and others in the family.
  3. Practice self-care by getting enough rest, eating well, exercising regularly, and spending time with friends and family who support your recovery efforts.
  4. Develop a support network of professionals and other family members who understand the challenges of living with an alcoholic.
  5. Finally, remember that recovery is possible and celebrate successes along the journey.

These tips for supporting someone with alcohol abuse disorder can help create an environment where everyone in the family feels respected and supported.

Support for Addicts and Their Families

There are various resources available to support individuals with alcohol use disorder and their families:

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)

A 12-step program designed to help individuals achieve and maintain sobriety. AA also offers support groups for family members called Al-Anon and Alateen.

SMART Recovery

A non-12-step program that emphasizes self-empowerment and provides both in-person and online meetings for individuals and their families.

Therapy and Counseling

Trained therapists and counselors offer tailored, evidence-based interventions to address alcoholism. 

Whether through individual, group, or family therapy, their support can help individuals confront underlying issues and acquire better communication and coping skills.

Rehabilitation Centers

Inpatient and outpatient treatment facilities offer various programs and services to help individuals with AUD and support their families during recovery.

Relevance Recovery Offers Alcoholism Family Support Resources in New Jersey

At Relevance Recovery, an outpatient substance abuse treatment facility in New Jersey, we offer multiple pathways for alcoholic family support services to help families of alcoholics and addicts. 

From family therapy to educational programs to support groups and intervention services, we provide everything you need to create a supportive environment for the whole family. 

We comprehend the distinctive challenge faced by families dealing with alcoholism and endeavor to empower our clients to overcome it. 

Contact our staff today to learn more about our family support services and how they can help you create a positive and healthy home environment. 

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