Alcoholism can rightly be considered a problem of mankind. However, not everyone can say with accuracy when and how this disease can manifest itself. Meanwhile, alcoholism, like any other disease, has several stages.
In total there are 4 stages of alcoholism. Not only the duration and effectiveness of treatment, but also the final result will depend on the degree of neglect and the situation in the patient’s environment. After all, many who have recovered even after a few years return to old habits. The whole point is not in the treatment, but in the wrong approach to the main cause of this problem, the lack of knowledge of the characteristics of the patient’s character, as well as insufficient psycho-emotional support for relatives and friends.
Not always the first stage of alcoholism is perceived as the beginning of the degradation of the personality and the progression of the disease as such. Treatment and its duration may depend on parameters such as:
- Patient’s age;
- Stage of the disease;
- Emotional state and atmosphere in the family;
- Predisposition (heredity);
- Stability/instability of the human psyche;
- Perception of the problem, as such, not only by the patient, but also by all his friends and relatives;
- Gender of the patient (male or female).
The first stage of alcoholism often goes unnoticed by both the patient and his environment. Often, a person suffering from alcohol addiction does not perceive his problem, he believes that he will never be dependent on the dose and amount of alcohol. There are also several symptoms by which you can determine the beginning of the problem. Stage 1 alcoholism manifests itself in the form of:
- Doses of alcohol are gradually increased;
- Reception of strong drinks is possible even for a minor reason;
- A person loses control, it is difficult to control movement, thoughts after drinking;
- Aggression towards acquaintances and friends is more often manifested;
- Cannot stop even after emptying the stomach of accumulated alcohol (vomiting);
- There is a severe hangover with pain in the head;
- So far, he reacts negatively to a hangover (rejection of alcohol);
- Contradictions in actions and words, both in alcoholic intoxication and in a sober state;
- Negative attitude towards alcoholics, does not consider his problem important.
Treatment of the initial stage
Treatment of the first stage of alcoholism is accompanied initially by the diagnosis of the problem for the patient himself. It is important to find out the reasons why this problem occurs. It is extremely important that the closest and dearest be aware of the problem. Indeed, in general, such a disease in society refers to those who did not take place in life, poor and morally weak individuals. Meanwhile, such reasoning can help further degradation of the personality, pushing to even worse consequences and lack of control over oneself while taking alcoholic beverages. Alcoholism is a disease that does not know the status in society. This is important to remember.
Also, do not miss the effect of alcohol on all human organs. Therefore, to understand the problem will help research on:
- Diseases of the liver and pancreas (heaviness, nausea, vomiting, pain and colic, bloating, indigestion);
- Vegetovascular disease (bloating of the veins, heaviness in the legs, swelling and pain after a day);
- Hypertensive diseases (sudden jumps in pressure, loss of strength, severe headaches, nausea);
- Nervous disorders (headaches, convulsions, swelling, irritability, sleep disturbance, hand rattling, aggression, irascibility).
How to determine the stage of alcoholism? You can’t figure this out on your own, without the help of a qualified specialist. The first signs should alert you. Early diagnosis and treatment is the basis for success in productive treatment.
The second stage of alcoholism: what are the symptoms and treatment methods
Alcoholism and its stages help to take measures for proper treatment. The second stage of alcoholism is already an alarming “bell” not only for the environment of the patient, but also for himself. The 2nd stage of alcoholism is accompanied by:
• An increase in the amount drunk per day up to 0.5 liters (beer in large quantities is also considered); • The desire to get drunk in the morning; • Symptoms of soreness after a hangover weaken; • Rapid intoxication, but subconscious control; • Memory lapses, inadequate reaction to comments; • Reasons and reasons why you can drink – also increases; • Mood rises only at the mention of the opportunity to drink; • The patient reacts sharply to criticism and comments from the outside, is aggressive and straightforward in expressions.
The degrees of alcoholism and their treatment vary from case to case. One will need more psychological help, the second will need tough conditions and limits beyond which he will not be able to cross. However, one thing becomes obvious: one cannot do without outside help. The second stage of alcohol dependence is treated through an integrated approach:
- Medical cleansing of the body. An important step that allows you to get rid of accumulated toxins. Intoxication of the body in this case is high, and medications allow you to cope not only with the side effects of taking a large amount of alcohol, but also accelerate the process of decomposition of ethanol in the blood plasma;
- Aversive treatment – drugs are administered intravenously in order to develop alcohol rejection. Often such drugs do not cause discomfort in a non-drinker. But the simultaneous intake of alcohol and such a drug causes vomiting, nausea, severe headaches and rejection at the subconscious level;
- Help of a psychologist. After all the manipulations were carried out with the patient’s body, the brain was freed from the effects of ethanol, it’s time to proceed to the main stage of treatment – psychological assistance and adaptation to normal life.
Also Read: How To Treat Alcoholism
How long such treatment can last is an individual feature of the patient. At this stage, it is important to identify the main causes of cravings for alcohol. After all, the effect of medications will not reduce the psycho-emotional dependence on relaxation, which can be obtained by drinking alcohol. This stage and its effectiveness completely depend on the professionalism of the doctor and the willingness to accept the result of all relatives. Only in this case can a recurrence of the disease be avoided.
The third stage of alcoholism: the problem of society and not only
The third stage of alcoholism is no longer a problem only for the patient’s family and close circle. This is a problem of the whole society: a person degrades, violates all existing norms and rules of communication, does not respond to comments and requests from loved ones, is a “burdening” factor for the family. Indeed, often the 3rd stage of alcoholism forces a person to refuse work, to neglect the desires of relatives and friends. This means that such a patient is not able to provide the purchase of expensive alcoholic beverages. As a result, funds, expensive equipment, and food are stolen from home. Also, the third stage of alcoholism is accompanied by such additional features as:
- Deformation of appearance: thin arms and legs, large torso and abdomen, burgundy or gray skin with obvious blockages of veins, swelling in any condition on all limbs and under the eyes, loss of teeth, blackening;
- The psyche is disturbed: inadequate reaction to simple things, unwillingness to make contact, aggression for no reason, unwillingness to change anything;
- Alcohol is the basis of the diet, replacing all healthy human nutrition. How much a person can drink depends partly on his configuration;
- Speech distortion;
- Paralysis of certain parts of the body, more often the face, arms, legs;
- Health problems: hepatitis, chronic pancreatitis, cancer, food indigestion, urinary and fecal incontinence;
- Alcohol resistance (less doses, but more often).
Treatment of alcoholism at this stage is a difficult task and not always effective. This is due, first of all, to the complete deformation of the human psyche, the reassessment of his values and priorities in life. Often such an addict does not set himself any goals, except for the extraction of the next portion of alcohol. However, all the first three stages of alcoholism can be treated only if this issue is approached correctly.
What stages are difficult to treat
Unfortunately, it is the third and fourth stages of alcoholism that are difficult to treat, and the patient will often need to be hospitalized in those conditions where nothing depends on him: hospitals, rehabilitation centers, closed polyclinics of a narrow profile. There is no medical treatment as such. The main task is to completely protect from alcohol for a long time, and in the process of recovery, conduct a permanent psychological diagnosis of the causes of the disease. Intravenous administration of medications that would reduce cravings for alcohol will not help at this stage of the disease. The person does not even respond to the gag reflex.
An important sign of the third stage of alcoholism is the danger to human life: 80% die even after treatment due to many years of intoxication of the body and irreversible processes of changes in internal organs. Depletion of heart tissue, vascular deformity, chronic diseases of the liver, kidneys and pancreas (in women, also the reproductive system) create dangerous conditions for a quality future life of the cured. Support for the most affected organs after treatment is the main task.
Alcoholism is an insidious disease. She sneaks up at the moment when it seems that the whole world is up in arms against you. Often the first stages of an alcoholic disease are skipped, not perceived as a real problem. And then the progression and speed of development of complications is inevitable. Years may pass from the moment of transition from the first stage to the fourth.
When the first signs are not identified and skipped, the complexity of the cure increases every day. Alcoholism at the stage of development of the fourth degree is rather a sentence. Life counts for months and weeks. The body is completely exhausted, and the organs can no longer cope with the basic functions of metabolism. But not a sentence exclusively for the sick. This is a diagnosis for those who could not help in time, give a helping hand, not perceiving the disease as a problem.
Unfortunately, at the fourth stage, it is no longer possible to help. The patient is not amenable to persuasion or hospitalization. Worst of all, the Stage 4 person in front of you has nothing to do with the person you have ever known. His brain is so distorted by alcohol that it is impossible to recognize in a person who you knew. Complete degradation of the subconscious, the basic instincts are replaced by new ones (drink). Even a professional psychologist and hypnosis will not help get rid of the problem.
Alcoholism is a disease. This is important to remember. Remember and know what can be done in order to avoid the unenviable fate of an alcoholic, from whom all relatives and friends have turned away, having crossed him out of the world of the living in advance.