5 Ways Outpatient Alcohol Treatment Can Help You Stop Binge Drinking
In 2019, more than 25% of people surveyed reported binge drinking in the last month. Binge drinking is a pattern of alcohol consumption that increases your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to 0.08g/dl or higher. This usually happens when men have 5 standard drinks or women have 4 standard drinks in less than two hours. This pattern of drinking is considered excessive, but it is also dangerous. People who binge drink are at an increased risk of adverse side effects such as alcohol poisoning.
If you are someone who binge drinks on a regular basis, you may be on your way to developing an alcohol use disorder or alcoholism. While you may not require around-the-clock care and support, you can benefit from an outpatient alcohol treatment program to help stop your alcohol binges. Here are 5 ways an outpatient alcohol rehab center can help you stop binge drinking.
1. Address Your Binge Drinking Before It Turns Into Alcoholism
Some people can binge drink from time to time without crossing the line into alcoholism. However, if you are having difficulty controlling how much you drink when you drink, or are unable to stop binge drinking, it is a huge warning sign that your drinking could spiral into alcoholism. Recognizing that your binges have gotten out of control is a good thing though–that means you can get treatment before your drinking gets worse.
Outpatient alcohol rehab programs are designed for those with mild addictions or those who have already completed a higher level of care. But, if you don’t require around-the-clock monitoring or medical detox services, outpatient rehab may be right for you. Outpatient treatment can help you put an end to your binge drinking so you can avoid needing more intensive and costly treatment in the future.
2. Learn Coping Skills To Use Instead of Drinking
If you drink in excess because you’re coping with stress or some other issue, you’re not alone. Many people abuse alcohol to get some kind of relief. The problem is that long-term alcohol abuse is not healthy for your mind or body, and it’s unlikely to make any of your problems go away. Rather than binging when you want to escape, there are healthy coping skills you can use, instead.
Outpatient alcohol treatment programs can help you identify stressors in your life and teach you ways to cope without relying on alcohol. They do this by facilitating behavioral therapy and promoting lifestyle changes that help reduce problematic drinking.
3. Develop a Sober Social Circle
If you are someone who is a “social drinker,” meaning you usually drink in the company of others who are drinking, you can benefit from developing relationships with sober individuals. However, this can be difficult to do if you don’t know where to meet people who don’t drink. After all, alcohol is such a normal part of American culture that more than half of Americans drink alcohol each month.
The majority of outpatient therapy sessions are held in groups. As time goes on, you will get to know the other patients in your groups. You will find some that you relate to who may become an important part of your sober support group. And, because you’ve spent time in therapy together, you’ll feel comfortable getting vulnerable and honest with these individuals. This transparency and common ground will set the foundation for meaningful, sober friendships.
Outpatient alcohol rehab centers also encourage 12-Step participation. 12-Step groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) can provide you with a long-term resource for peer support. By introducing you to local 12-Step meetings, you’ll have even more opportunities to grow your sober social circle. The more you surround yourself with sober people, the more likely you’ll be to stop binge drinking, yourself.
4. Monitor Your Drinking Patterns
Outpatient rehab programs do not provide the same level of structure and monitoring that inpatient rehab programs do, however, they can help hold you accountable for your sobriety. During each session, you will check in with your therapist and discuss what is going on in your life. Your therapist will talk with you about your cravings, your alcohol use, and anything you may be struggling with. Having someone there who is monitoring your drinking and your achievements in recovery can help prevent a slip-up.
If you do have a drink or go on a binge, returning to outpatient rehab can help you figure out why you drank and what you could have done to prevent it.
5. Learn Relapse Prevention Techniques
Choosing to embrace a lifestyle of sobriety is a long-term endeavor. A primary goal of outpatient alcohol rehab is to teach you practical relapse prevention techniques that can help you stop binge drinking for good. Examples of relapse prevention techniques you may practice during rehab include:
- Self-care (quality sleep, diet, and exercise)
- Mindfulness meditation
- Deep breathing
- Grounding techniques
- Support groups
Being able to recognize when you should use these techniques can be challenging, but an outpatient rehab center can help you become aware of your needs and triggers so you can cope in the right way.
Start Outpatient Alcohol Treatment in Massachusetts Today
Here at Woburn Addiction Treatment, Our outpatient alcohol treatment program is beneficial to those living at home, at school, or in a recovery residence to help guide a person to a life of purpose. This level of care is ideal for people who are unable to take the time off from work or school but feel a need to engage in treatment to prevent the typical adverse events or escalation of alcohol abuse.
If you or a loved one are ready to put an end to problematic drinking habits with outpatient rehab, please give us a call today.