Sometimes individuals who abuse alcohol or who have alcoholism need help but are convinced that their situation is hopeless or simply don't think they have a problem. However, alcoholism is a killer, and it can sometimes take an intervention of friends and family to get the individual the help they need before it is too late. An alcohol intervention is one tool that family members and friends can use when an individual's alcoholism has reached a crisis level and they don't have the power to get the help they need on their own. Before the individual continues to hurt themselves and others, the only choice left is a professional alcohol intervention.
Contrary to popular belief, you don't have to wait for an individual to reach "rock bottom" before having an alcohol intervention. If you notice warning signs of alcohol abuse, the right time to get the individual help is now, not when they are stealing money from your wallet or dying of liver cirrhosis. It can be difficult to determine how bad a person's alcohol use is, because individual's caught up in alcoholism typically try and hide their problem. However, common signs to look out for include heavy and frequent intoxication, drinking in dangerous situations such as when driving and black-out drinking or a drastic change in mood when drinking. If an individual is continuing to drink despite the fact that it is causing them to miss work, drive drunk, negate responsibilities or get in trouble with the law, now is the appropriate time to have an alcohol intervention before it gets any worse.
Some family members or friends may also need convincing as part of the beginning stages of an alcohol intervention. It is common for individuals closest to an alcoholic to be in denial that there is a problem, and this may be one of the first hurdles to overcome. Some may even be supporting the alcoholic's habit, knowingly or unknowingly, and may harbor their own personal guilt over letting the individual's alcoholism get so out of hand. The important thing is that they put themselves back in a position of power over the situation, and not allow themselves to deny the problem or allow it to continue. This is in part because of a need for self preservation, as well as an attempt to save the alcoholic's life. Educating everyone involved about the basics of alcoholism and its warnings signs, symptoms, and consequences will assist greatly during the planning process of an alcohol intervention.
An alcohol intervention is a way for individuals who have been affected by the individual's alcoholism or for those who care about the individual's well being to confront them and tell them how alcohol is damaging their life and the lives of others. For those who have the faith in the individual and who care for them, this can be a last ditch effort to save the alcohol's life. More than that, it can empower those who have been affected by alcoholism to do something more than just sit back and watch the individual deteriorate even further while creating destruction all around them. Alcohol interventions are not just a way to bring awareness to the individual that their drinking is out of control and can ultimately kill them. The only purpose of an alcohol intervention is to get the individuals in a drug rehab program immediately so they can get the help they urgently need.
An alcohol intervention is not something that should be done off the cuff, and most successful alcohol intervention are carefully planned events that are developed in coordination with an alcohol rehab center or a professional interventionist. Alcohol rehab centers typically have professional drug counselors who are trained in the alcohol intervention procedure and are prepared to help families, friends and others orchestrate an intervention to help someone struggling with alcoholism.
An alcohol intervention is always carefully arranged and planned, and the idea is to stage the alcohol intervention in a controlled environment which is specifically selected to put the individual in a position in which he is most likely to listen. This can be done in the individual's home or the home of a friend or family member, but some alcohol interventions even take place at the workplace with the full cooperation of the employer. For the most part, an alcohol intervention may come as a total surprise to the alcoholic. However, a new alcohol intervention approach entails having members of the intervention team tell the alcoholic that they are going to be working with a treatment counselor to discuss their drinking problem several days prior to the actual alcohol intervention.
An alcohol intervention should be conducted in a way that is supportive and caring, and done out of love. You would want to stray from a guilt-trip type approach, as this can soon backfire. While an alcohol intervention can be held as a one-on-one conversation, the more people involved usually produces the most dramatic results. Examples of people who should be considered to take part in an alcohol intervention include family members, friends, spouses, employers and co-workers, therapists, physicians and spiritual or religious advisors. Prime candidates for alcohol intervention participants are individuals who the alcoholic respects and loves, and would listen to and want to change for. It is important not to let one's own opinion effect the selection process. You want to have the individuals present that will make the alcoholic choose treatment, even if it means having someone there that you may not care for.
Alcohol intervention participants should become knowledgeable about what is happening to their friend or loved one. The interventionist, who is typically a professional drug rehab counselor, can help educate intervention participants about alcoholism and what takes place in an alcohol rehab that will help get them sober. The intervention participants will then put together something that will be read at the intervention, something from their heart, about how alcohol has affected their relationship with the alcoholic and how things must change. The letter can begin with more positive memories or experiences that were shared prior to alcohol abuse, and then phase over into a non-judgmental but honest account of how alcohol is destroying relationships and limiting the individuals future and compromising their health and welfare and the welfare of others.
To end the individual confrontations, alcohol intervention participants should always offer alcohol rehab as an immediate solution to the problem. Research should be done ahead of time, and the proper reservations and preparations made for the individual to begin treatment IMMEDIATELY when they agree to treatment as part of the alcohol intervention. This can be coordinated with the professional interventionist, who is knowledgeable in the various types of alcohol rehab and would know which program would best suit the individual's needs based off of information from intervention participants.
If the individual does not accept the treatment that has been arranged, they should know as part of the confrontation that there will be consequences if they refuse treatment. This should be well thought out ahead of time, and should be honest "bottom line" consequences that will actually be set into motion if the individuals continues their destructive behavior and refuses help. Examples of this can be loss of financial support, use of vehicles or even legal consequences such as loss of custody of children. Like an alcohol intervention, these consequences are not a threat, but would all be enforced in the best interest of the individual who is destroying their life and the lives of those around them. If an alcohol intervention participant is not able to verbalize and follow through with their bottom lines, they should not participate. It is extremely also important that alcohol intervention participants should only read their bottom lines if the individual refuses alcohol rehab treatment. If they agree to treatment after hearing participants out, then here is no need to introduce negative consequences that would add unneeded stress to the situation.
It is quite common for an individual who has been confronted in an alcohol intervention to offer up all manner of reasons why they can't go to treatment. Family members and loved ones can often anticipate what these objections will be ahead of time, and can prepare accordingly and ensure everything is in order prior to the actual intervention. For instance, individuals may be concerned about their job or who will care for their children while they are in alcohol rehab. All of these things can be resolved with the help of alcohol intervention participants who can some together for find solutions to these problems so that the individual can focus on getting well. The important thing is not to go into agreement with petty excuses or problems with obvious solution, and stay focused on the goal at hand which is getting the individual immediately in treatment.
There are several alcohol rehab options for individuals who require treatment for alcohol addiction or alcoholism. There are short-term & long-term drug rehab programs, and treatment counselors can help decide which program is best suited for the individual. It is important that they take part in alcohol rehab, and not attempt to quit cold turkey on their own. This is because of the physical dependence that individuals develop to alcohol over time, which causes withdrawal symptoms when they suddenly stop drinking. Alcohol withdrawal is a serious condition and can be deadly in some cases. Symptoms can include but are not limited to tremors, body-aches, diarrhea, sweating, and insomnia. It can also cause increased heart rate, high fever, high blood pressure, and Delirium Tremens. Delirium Tremens is what is of concern when individuals go through alcohol withdrawal, as this can cause panic attacks, shaking, and hallucinations. Individuals who do experience Delirium Tremens must be closely monitored to avoid the risk of death due to high blood pressure and increased heart rate. DT's can last for up to a week, and it is recommended that anyone going through alcohol withdrawal do so only under medical supervision.
More often than not, an alcohol intervention achieves its goal of getting an individual who is struggling with alcohol addiction or alcoholism started in treatment. It is not uncommon however for an individual to refuse treatment, and refuse to admit that he or she has a problem. In this situation, alcohol intervention participants should that they did all they can do to help the individual and should not feel obligated to do anything further at that point. Having an alcohol intervention is the best thing that could have happened for both the individual abusing alcohol and the intervention participants, because it got the truth on the table and let the individual know they will not be allowed to let their behavior negatively affect others any longer.
It can sometimes take time for an alcohol intervention to set in. It is common for individuals who were the subject of an alcohol intervention to accept offers of treatment weeks or months after the actual alcohol intervention. It can take time for all of the emotions to subside and for the voice of reason to set in. Regardless, don't give in to temptations to enable the individual one minute longer. Follow through with all bottom lines consequences, because in the end this is the only truly loving thing you can do that will ensure that they get the help they need eventually. If the individual continues to self-destruct despite consequences and ultimatums, consider contacting an addiction specialist who may be able to give some suggestions on how to get the individual in treatment.
An alcohol intervention is done out of love and compassion, and alcohol intervention participants should never feel guilty about voicing their feelings and holding the intervention. The individual who is struggling with alcohol addiction is sure to understand the reason everyone came together for the intervention, which was ultimately to save their life. Contact an alcohol rehab and coordinate with a professional alcohol treatment counselor who can help organize an alcohol intervention for your loved one as soon as possible.