The timeline of alcohol recovery is often hard to forecast because every addict is different. While one addict begins recovery and sticks to an alcohol-free lifestyle for the rest of his/her life, another addict begins recovery and continues to struggle with relapse time and time again, elongating their alcohol recovery timeline. These are the typical stages that recovering alcoholics go through as they progress to a richer and fuller lifestyle free of addiction.
The Beginning of Recovery
The beginning of recovery typically begins with some sort of crisis or all-time low that makes the addict want to change. The event might be a near-death experience or the addict's children being taken away by social services in relation to the drug abuse. Certain addicts might even wake up one day and suddenly realize the need for a change in their habits.
To begin the recovery process, the addict must have a very real desire to gain control over their addiction, and they must have an organized program with the aid of sober individuals to help them through recovery. If either of these necessities are lacking, the addict is not likely to successfully recover.
Once an addict has begun recovery and has begun work in a reputable program, the next stage in the timeline is relapsing. Not every recovering addict will relapse, but it is extremely common and likely.
It is best to look at relapsing as a complete reset of the recovery process. No matter how long the addict has gone without touching alcohol, the addict starts completely over at square one the moment he/she relapses. Relapsing might only occur once for some addicts, while for others, it could be an ongoing issue for the rest of their lives.
Many variables can cause relapse including:
• Too much stress from recovery
• Being in the presence of other addicts
• Seeing or talking about alcohol
• A catastrophic life event
The final stage of recovery is maintenance, and it lasts until the addict passes away. It must be noted that once a person becomes addicted to alcohol, it is there to stay. That's why for the rest of an addict's life, he/she must work diligently with the tools they gained in recovery to maintain their sobriety and continue to build on their hard work. The final and ongoing stage of maintenance is all about preventing relapse.
You or someone you know may be in need of recovery if you/they exhibit any of the following symptoms:
• A very high tolerance for alcohol
• Withdrawal symptoms set in after a prolonged period without alcohol
• The inability to control how much you drink
• You feel an urge to stop drinking, but you seemingly cannot
If you or someone you know is struggling with an alcohol addiction, seek help right away. It's never too late to begin the recovery process and gain your life back. There are too many valuable things in your life to ignore and neglect over a drug addiction, including yourself.
Aubrey is a writer for MyFoibles.com. Her hobbies include internet marketing and working on personal health.