Northpoint Nebraska designs individualized and integrated treatment plans that address the physical and psychological aspects of your alcohol use disorder, as well as any co-occurring mental health disorders, such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
We offer evidence-based treatment programs, both inpatient and outpatient, that give patients both a safe and comfortable place to overcome their disorder. Patients will learn to identify factors that contribute to their alcohol use disorder, how to avoid relapses, and how to maintain sobriety for the rest of their life.
Located in Omaha, Nebraska, our 44-bed facility with state-of-the-art technology is designed to produce positive outcomes for patients. We also offer free assessments for anyone considering entering any of our substance abuse treatment programs.
Alcohol Abuse Disorder: What Is It?
Millions of people in the United States have been affected by an alcohol use disorder.
Experts define an alcohol use disorder as a medical condition marked by an impaired ability to stop or control alcohol use despite negative social, occupational, or health consequences.
An estimated 15 million people in the United States have an alcohol use disorder, according to numbers provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). About 401,000 are children ages 12-17, and as of 2018, 5.8% of the adult U.S. population had an alcohol use disorder.
Warning signs of an alcohol use disorder may include:
- Wanting to stop drinking but being unable to
- Drinking longer than intended
- Spending large amounts of time drinking
- Drinking despite the problems it causes
- Drinking to the point of feeling sick, leading to the inability to complete daily tasks
- Choosing alcohol over hobbies and other activities you used to enjoy
Unfortunately, the NIH reports only 10% of people with an alcohol use disorder seek treatment.
The Long-Term Dangers of Excessive Alcoholism
Excessive drinking, a term used to describe heavy and binge drinking, can have a negative impact on your health. Drinking excessively can cause a variety of health problems, including:
- High blood pressure
- Mental health disorders
- Alcohol use disorders
- Weakened immune system (making you more likely to get sick)
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
Excessive drinking may also cause problems in your professional and personal life. You can help prevent these problems by limiting yourself to moderate drinking.
Moderate drinking is defined as two drinks or less in a day for men and one drink or less a day for women.
You should not drink alcohol at all if you are pregnant, driving, or planning to drive, under the age of 21, recovering from an alcohol use disorder, unable to control your alcohol intake, taking certain medications, or have certain medical conditions.
Unfortunately, many young people under the age of 21 in America engage in drinking and are at greater risk of developing an alcohol use disorder (AUD).
Underage Drinking in the United States
Underage drinking in the United States is the consumption of alcohol by those younger than 21 years old, which is illegal.
According to the National Institutes of Health, 39.7% of Americans ages 12-20 admitted in 2019 to having had at least one drink in their lives. Around 7 million admitted to drinking alcohol in the last month. A reported 825,000 admitted to heavy drinking in that same timeframe.
The NIH says, “Research indicates that alcohol use during the teenage years can interfere with normal adolescent brain development and increase the risk of developing AUD.”
Underage drinking can also lead to dangerous activities or situations, such as impaired driving or risky sexual behavior. Those under the age of 21 are advised to refrain from drinking alcohol entirely. Not only are there dangers associated with it, but it’s also illegal.
What Are The Signs of Alcohol Withdrawal?
Alcohol withdrawal occurs when someone who regularly drinks too much alcohol stops.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, ”Alcohol withdrawal occurs most often in adults. But, it may occur in teenagers or children. The more you drink regularly, the more likely you are to develop alcohol withdrawal symptoms when you stop drinking. You may have more severe withdrawal symptoms if you have certain other medical problems.”
Withdrawal symptoms begin about eight hours after the last drink. Symptoms usually peak within 24-72 hours. These adverse reactions may require medical attention if they are severe.
Common symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include:
- Mood swings
More severe symptoms include:
- Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that aren’t there)
What You Should Know About the Detox Process
Research has shown that those who complete alcohol rehab and treatment are less likely to relapse and more likely to remain in recovery. The use of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is essential for mitigating withdrawal symptoms and can significantly ease discomfort.
The medically-assisted detox process will address the physical dependence on alcohol and also cleanse the body of toxins. This will be combined with alcohol addiction treatment therapies like counseling and psychosocial support. A medicated detox may also prevent the onset of more severe withdrawal symptoms and calm the cravings for alcohol.
After detox, patients typically enter a residential alcohol addiction treatment program that can last weeks or months, depending upon the patient’s individual needs. There they will address the underlying cause of their addiction, learn how to manage cravings, and altogether learn how to remain on the road to recovery. After detox and residential rehab, patients may transition into an outpatient program.
As part of MAT, co-occurring mental health disorders may be found and treated. Many people battling a substance use disorder don’t even know they have a co-occurring disorder. Co-occurring disorders are the combination of a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder and are common for people receiving MAT. These two conditions negatively impact one another and must be treated simultaneously for the best chance of recovery.
Reach Out Now to Northpoint Nebraska
If you think it’s time to help a loved one address their alcohol use disorder, there are a few things to keep in mind. Many health providers believe a support system is crucial in one’s road to recovery. This support needs to be tempered with patience; overcoming an obstacle is never easy, especially for those struggling with an alcohol use disorder.
Acknowledge their successes along the way, cheer them on, and guard against being discouraged or angry with them. Remember, this is a journey, not a race. Overcoming an alcohol use disorder takes time, but it can be done.
We have compassionate healthcare providers standing by to answer your questions and tell you more about the alcohol use disorder treatments we offer at Northpoint Nebraska. Call us today at 402.698.3475.