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Can You Get Alcoholism Counseling Between the Ages of 18 and 21?

Underage drinking – that is, drinking while under the age of 21 – is a serious problem in the United States that affects millions of people. It is estimated that people between the ages of 12 and 20 drink 11 percent of all of the alcohol consumed in the country, and drinking at these ages is responsible for over 4,000 deaths every year.

One could argue that some of these issues stem from youthful indiscretion, that they are the result of young people engaging in risky behaviors that they don’t entirely understand due to their young age, but a person can become an alcoholic even when they aren’t old enough to drink. Like anyone else, they often require addiction treatment if they are to become sober. The problem with this is that drinking while under the age of 21 is illegal in the United States. You can say what you will about an older adult with a drinking problem, but at least for them the act of consuming alcohol isn’t a crime. Someone drinking before they turn 21 is, and that can make those between the ages of 18 and 21 reluctant to seek treatment.

The good news is that you can undergo alcohol counseling between the ages of 18 and 21. You can even undergo counseling when you’re under 18, although you would be a minor and most likely be in the care of a parent or legal guardian. You won’t undergo any punishments for consuming an illegal substance anymore than you would if you had checked in to a rehab center for an addiction to heroin or another illicit substance. The important thing is that you are seeking treatment, not that you have broken the law.

What To Expect

Even though someone under the age of 21 can become addicted to alcohol, alcoholism presents itself a bit differently in young people. First of all, a young person is still developing physically and mentally, and that development may be affected depending on how much alcohol they’ve consumed. This is especially true for those between the ages of 12 and 18 who are still going through puberty, but some studies have suggested that people haven’t fully matured until the reach the age of 25. That would mean that heavy drinking at the age of 18 or even at 21 could still be detrimental to one’s cognitive development. A treatment program for underage drinking needs to address that.

Someone who enters into an alcohol treatment program under the age of 21 can expect to first undergo detox and withdrawal from alcohol. This often requires inpatient treatment, but outpatient treatment may be available depending on your situation and your treatment center. This is physically the most difficult part for many people since alcohol withdrawal can be harrowing and even dangerous. You can expect symptoms such as nausea, shakiness, headaches, an irregular heartbeat, anxiety, depression, and mood swings, to name a few. Depending on how old you were when you started drinking, these symptoms might be worse than what an older adult might experience. You may even need medical assistance to get through it if it is particularly severe.

Once you’ve detoxed and are technically over the physical addiction, your next step is to undergo cognitive therapy. Alcoholism almost never occurs in a vacuum; there are usually underlying causes that drive a person to start drinking. These can be anything from mental illness to problems in the home. This may be one case where your age might work in your favor since it’s easier to treat one’s mental health issues when they are younger. You might also be expected to undergo family therapy if your problems stem from the home. This is especially the case for younger people. In any case, these therapy sessions can help you understand that you are not alone in your struggle. You do have loved ones who will help you, even if it doesn’t always feel that way.

Don’t Be Afraid to Seek Help

No matter how old you may be, you should never be afraid to seek treatment for a drinking problem. Alcoholism can affect people at any age, even if it does present in slightly different ways in younger people. If you believe that you may have a problem with alcohol or you know someone who does, contact our treatment center today. Our staff is available to talk 24 hours a day, and they will be happy to answer all of your questions. 

How Do You Pick the Best Alcohol Rehab for You?

Alcoholism is a disease that impacts the lives of millions of individuals and families each year. Overcoming an addiction to alcohol is never easy, even if you are committed and motivated to live a life of sobriety. Choosing an alcohol rehab center or program that is right for you greatly depends on your needs, personality, and the severity of your addiction.

Not all alcohol rehab solutions are ideal for individuals who are struggling with addiction. While inpatient rehabilitation treatment programs are optimal for those who require a stable environment and the assistance of medical professionals, an outpatient program or support group may be better for those who wish to maintain their job and current living situation.

Types of Alcohol Rehab Programs and Facilities

Before choosing an alcohol rehabilitation program, it is important to consider the different types of solutions that are most common. Some of the most prominent types of alcohol rehab include:

Inpatient Rehabilitation Treatment Centers and Facilities (Short and Long-Term Solutions)

Intensive Outpatient Programs and Guidance

Outpatient Support Groups and Programs

Individual/Group Therapy Sessions

Not all rehabilitation solutions are ideal for anyone struggling with an addiction to alcohol. Consider the severity of your addiction and whether or not you are capable of abstaining from purchasing and consuming alcohol when left to your own devices. If you lack self-control when it comes to consuming alcohol, an inpatient rehabilitation program or an intensive outpatient solution is likely your best option. For individuals who have only just recently become dependent on using alcohol more frequently than just socially, outpatient programs and local support groups may be more suitable.

Determining the best alcohol rehab solution for you highly depends on the current severity of your addiction and whether or not you have struggled with extreme addictions throughout the entirety of your life. Most individuals who have struggled with consistent addictions are more prone to relapsing and giving into temptation when not monitored and guided using an inpatient rehab center or treatment facility.

Choosing an Inpatient Rehabilitation Center

Inpatient rehabilitation centers and treatment programs require individuals to complete 30, 60, or even 90 days of their program while living within the facility itself. Inpatient programs are ideal for those who have a serious health risk of quitting their addiction “cold turkey” and without medical guidance. Inpatient programs not only provide monitored detoxing, but also offer the assistance of both medical professionals and addiction counselors who specialize in alcoholism and treating it effectively.

Intensive Outpatient/Outpatient Programs

Intensive outpatient solutions and outpatient programs work for individuals who are currently employed or unable to move from their home or place of living. Intensive outpatient programs may require an individual to visit a medical facility for checkups while working together with both doctors and therapists who specialize in helping those with severe alcohol addictions.

Outpatient programs do not typically require individuals to live within a rehabilitation treatment center or facility. Instead, outpatient programs may require attendance to various meetings, checkups, and therapy sessions depending on the program you have selected and the type of assistance and support you are seeking.

Support Groups and Group Counseling

Attending local support meetings and sponsor groups is another way to obtain the necessary mental and emotional support required to overcome a serious addiction to alcohol. Obtaining a sponsor is one way to stick to your goals without giving into temptation and indulging in bad and detrimental habits. Support groups are optimal for those who have not yet developed a physical addiction to alcohol but want additional emotional and mental support to stop overindulging.

Support groups provide a safe space to communicate openly and honestly about the challenges and obstacles you face each day. Connect with others who steer clear from alcohol to prevent falling back into bad habits. Share your story while listening to the stories of others who have experienced similar situations.

Understanding the most common types of alcohol rehabs and treatment programs that are currently available is essential when you want to stop using alcohol altogether. With a complete understanding of various alcohol rehab solutions, select a treatment center or program that is right for you and the future lifestyle you envision for yourself.

Are you ready to make a positive change in your life while eliminating your addiction to alcohol? Our counselors are available 24 hours a day.

Will an Alcoholism Treatment Center Treat Other Addictions?

You’ve made the decision to get help for your addiction, but most of the centers that you’re considering seem to focus on treating alcoholics. Maybe you want to enter treatment as a couple, but you’re each addicted to different substances. There’s no need to worry. In almost every case, an alcoholism treatment center will treat other addictions.

How is Alcoholism Treatment Different From Drug Addiction Treatment?

Alcoholics and addicts share many things, but there are a few key differences that affect treatment for them.

Withdrawal from alcohol is more dangerous than withdrawal from other drugs.

Alcohol is more readily available and more socially acceptable than drugs. This can make alcohol harder to resist when people complete treatment.

Most addicts don’t engage in the “binge” behavior that some alcoholics do.

Will an Alcoholism Treatment Center Treat Other Addictions?

Any treatment center that specializes in substance abuse will treat both drug addiction and alcoholism. There are good reasons for this.

Some Addicts Use Both Drugs and Alcohol

Although some alcoholics and addicts prefer their favorite mind-altering substance, it’s also true that many of them will “cross over” if they can’t get access to their favorite.

The bottom line is that for a desperate addict, any substance will do. Chronic alcoholics and drug abusers have been known to use household chemicals and toiletry items to get their high. The pattern of addiction are the same.

There are also addicts who use alcohol to intensify the effect of their drugs, and vice versa. If you have difficulty with any type of substance abuse, you’re facing the same problems.

The Treatments for Addiction Rely on the Same Principles

Just as the patterns of addiction are similar, treatment of alcoholism and drug addiction are dependent on the same basic principles.

  • The addict or alcoholic must be committed to recovery and sobriety.
  • Individual therapy is a proven method for helping addicts overcome their addiction.
  • Peer support and family support are key to ongoing sobriety.
  • Addicts and alcoholics need to learn new ways of coping with daily stress and other triggers.

Alcoholics and Addicts Can Help Each Other

At a treatment or detox center, you’ll find other people who are going through the same thing that you are. While there may be differences in your substances of choice, you are all in this together.

Peer support is an important part of getting and staying sober. By talking with others, you’ll get ideas that you may not have thought of on your own. You’ll also be able to share insights from your own experience. That mutual help makes everyone stronger.

What You Should Look for in a Treatment Center

If you’ve made the decision to get help, the next big step is finding an inpatient or outpatient facility. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

At an inpatient center, you’ll be away from the temptations to drink or take drugs, but you’ll have to leave your family, job and other responsibilities. At an outpatient center, you’ll have more daily temptations to abuse substances, but you’ll also have your family nearby and keep your job.

A Proven Program

Whether you’re considering inpatient or outpatient treatment, you should look for a facility or rehab center that provides the following things that are proven to help with addiction:

  • Individualized treatment plans.
  • Therapy based on proven techniques.
  • Group therapy.
  • Family therapy.
  • Couples counseling if you are attending as a couple.
  • Relapse prevention training.
  • Attendance at peer support groups.
  • Follow-up care to help you maintain sobriety.

What About Withdrawal?

It’s natural to be concerned about the effects of withdrawal. You should ask if the center you’re considering provides safe, medically-supervised detox.

  • Medical detox means that you won’t have to suffer the pain, sickness and other symptoms of withdrawal.
  • Medical detox is especially important if you’re addicted to alcohol, because sudden withdrawal from alcohol can be dangerous.
  • It is harder to get sober if you still have alcohol or drugs in your system.
  • Medical detox is done in complete privacy.

Find a Treatment Center for Alcoholism and Drug Addiction

There are many choices out there when it comes to treatment centers for addiction. Our knowledgeable counselors can help you make the right one. If you’re ready to start a new and better life, call us anytime.

How Often Do You Go to Outpatient Treatment Programs?

As more people seek help for their substance abuse problems, the concept of outpatient treatment programs gains popularity. This type of program has become desirable, especially because it allows recovering addicts to participate in treatment without having to abandon their daily responsibilities. This greater sense of freedom is one of the major factors that distinguishes outpatient treatment from inpatient programs.

Since outpatient treatment is less structured than inpatient programs, it’s reasonable to expect it to take a little longer. The weekly schedule for outpatient treatment is less restrictive, so recovering addicts can continue to function. This can lead those seeking treatment for the first time wondering how much time will be spent in treatment. This overview can settle some of those concerns and provides a general overview of outpatient treatment programs.

How Much Time Do You Spend in Outpatient Treatment Programs?

While outpatient treatment allows you to live at home, you are required to spend a significant portion of each day in treatment sessions. Most programs require recovering addicts to attend treatment at least five days a week and each day requires full-time attendance. Alternatively, some facilities offer seven day programs, which allow the patients to adopt part-time daily schedules. This may be preferable for those with more responsibilities outside of treatment.

As the individual begins participating in the outpatient treatment program, he or she may be required to spend much of each day participating in various types of group and one-on-one therapy sessions. A daily 10-12 hour schedule is typically filled with counseling, peer group meetings, and other activities. However, as the individual progresses through the program, he or she may not be required to spend as much time engaged in therapy sessions. Over time, they may be able to reduce the amount of time spent at the treatment facility each day, although this will depend on the programs offered by the facility and the severity of the individual’s addiction.

How Long Does Outpatient Treatment Last?

As might be expected, an outpatient treatment program does take longer to complete than an inpatient program. While inpatient treatment can usually be completed within six months, an outpatient program can take up to one year to complete. On average, addicts spent about 10 weeks in outpatient treatment. However, as previously mentioned, the time you spend in treatment each day will taper down over time. While you will spend the majority of your day in treatment as you begin the program, your schedule will become more lenient as you near completion of your treatment.

Of course, these estimates won’t apply to every case. The amount of time you spend in therapy each day and the time it takes to complete treatment will depend on your situation. People who have spent years struggling with addiction to harder drugs will likely require more time to complete a program than someone who has only been using for a shorter period of time. Each individual’s treatment will be tailored to fit his or her situation.

What Does Outpatient Treatment Entail?

Each day in treatment will involve several different types of sessions. As you begin the program, your condition will be evaluated and this will help to determine your needs. At this time, you’ll be assigned a therapist for one on one counseling. Your therapist will help you address personal issues that affect your addiction, yet can’t be discussed in a public forum. When you’re not meeting with your therapist privately, you’ll be engaged in peer support group meetings and other social activities.

Some of the topics that will be addressed in the outpatient treatment program may include:

  • Coping with withdrawal symptoms
  • Preventing relapses
  • Coping with triggers and cravings
  • Understanding how substance abuse affects brain chemistry
  • The 12 Step Program
  • Embracing spirituality
  • Understanding co-occurring disorders

As you begin treatment, you may be wary of sharing your thoughts with other addicts, but you shouldn’t let yourself feel intimidated. Groups are small, usually involving no more than 10 participants per session. Additionally, everyone is there for the same reason and you’ll find this to be a supportive and safe environment.

If you would like to know more about outpatient treatment programs, you can contact our counselors at your convenience. Representatives can be reached at anytime of the day or night. We can help you understand more about the process, so you can begin your path to recovery.

Is Drug and Alcohol Rehab Really Better than Quitting Cold Turkey?

Admitting to yourself that you have a drug or alcohol problem is the first step toward liberation from a dangerous and unhealthy lifestyle. If you are like most people afflicted with a substance abuse disorder, you probably went through some tough times that led you to this conclusion. Now that you realize that you have this problem, you are probably wondering what the next step is to arrest your addiction for good. Perhaps you have heard about drug and alcohol rehabs and are questioning if they are necessary or whether you can stop cold turkey by yourself without any assistance.

Usually, when you reach the point where you recognize the severity of your problem with drugs and alcohol, your situation has become untenable. Recovery from substance abuse is a significant undertaking, and you should leverage all available options towards a successful outcome. While some addicts and alcoholics can stop cold turkey, they are the exception, and most require some help professionally to recover from addiction.

Below are some reasons why utilizing the services of a drug and alcohol rehab is a better idea than quitting cold turkey by yourself.

Rehabs Manage Your Withdrawal Symptoms.

Depending on your drug of choice, you could experience uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms that make quitting extremely difficult by yourself. Often, when a chemically dependent person begins to encounter the effects of withdrawal, they feel so horrible physically and mentally that they are compelled to use again. Also, abruptly quitting some substances can be life-threatening. Immediate cessation of alcohol or benzodiazepines, for example, can result in grand mal seizures, even after days of sobriety.

Conversely, drug and alcohol rehabs specialize in addressing withdrawal symptoms medically, so that the patient is safe and does not go through the horrible discomfort that they would when quitting cold turkey. Doctors in treatment facilities prescribe medications for a detoxification protocol, and these meds differ according to your drug of choice. Nurses monitor your vital signs on a regular schedule and adjust medications accordingly with the oversight of the physician. The goal is to prepare you physically and mentally for the remainder of your treatment.

Rehabs Teach the Skills to Stay Sober for the Rest of Your Life.

If recovery from drugs and alcohol were easy, then every addict and alcoholic would be sober. Just like any other job that you are unfamiliar with, there are instructions to follow for a favorable result. In a drug and alcohol rehab, you will learn life skills that will help you to stay sober from trained professionals that specialize in addiction. If you were to try and stop using by yourself, you would not receive any instructions on how to stay sober, and, at this point, you probably realize that your ideas in this regard have proved futile.

Rehab also gives you the opportunity to interact with other addicts and alcoholics that are in the same position. There is a comfort in spending time with others that understand what you are going through and can relate to your struggle. Sharing your experience with others and listening to theirs is particularly therapeutic and lightens the load of your concerns. Trying to quit cold turkey is frightening because no one can empathize with your position. Addiction is a disease of loneliness, so trying to tackle it by yourself does not make sense.

Rehabs Give You the Time that You Need for Your Brain and Body to Heal.

Substance abuse wreaks havoc on the organs of your body, and your brain. Neurotransmitters, synapses, and other components of cerebral functionality are all adversely affected by addiction. Your liver, kidneys, heart, and lungs might also have issues to address. Drug and alcohol rehabs specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of addiction-related illness. Anxiety and depression are common conditions reported by recovering addicts, and staff mental health professionals can treat the symptoms. Ailments, such as liver disease, are subject to monitoring and medical care.

Also, the time spent in a drug and alcohol rehab is a critical reprieve from the stresses and agitations of your everyday life, many of which contribute to your addictive behavior. This time of healing is vital for the personal reflection and soul-searching that is so essential at this juncture of your life. Trying to manage your stressful daily affairs is exceptionally challenging, to begin with, let alone while you are trying to get sober. You need to take a break and allow people to help you because trying to manage your life under these circumstances is not working.

Now, it is not impossible to quit drugs and alcohol cold turkey, and people have done it before. The problem with this approach is that the odds are stacked heavily against you. Will power alone does not work against chemical dependency, and thousands of addicts have found this out the hard way. We can help you to win the battle with your addiction.

What Are The Advantage of Going To A Boston Alcohol Rehab?

Being addicted to alcohol is something I was predisposed too. My father drank, and my grandfather before him had an addiction problem also. When it came time to get treatment, I didn’t know where to turn. I am a native of Ohio, but I wanted to go somewhere to recover that would keep people out of my business. For me, recovery is a very private thing, and it was easier to let people think I was on holiday or an extended work assignment. If you need help with drug or alcohol addiction, then I highly recommend you check out the recovery centers in Boston. There are many advantages to going to such a beautiful city to recover.

Boston is Booming with History

I love Boston because of the history of the city. If you choose an outpatient-based therapy, then you can get out and see the sights as often as you like. Inpatient therapy can give you plenty of options too. If you love architecture and learning about the past, then the Freedom Trail is something you should experience while you are there. Rehab centers are not all about sitting in a hospital setting and detoxing. The extended programs offer many field trips and things to get you out and involved with others in recovery.

There Are an Abundance of Hospitals and Medical Colleges

Aside from historical significance, the city has some of the best medical care around. There are hospitals and rehab centers located throughout Brookline, Cambridge, Chelsea, and Quincy. You can choose the part of the city that most appeals to you. Let’s not forget that they have some of the most recognized medical colleges in the country. These rehabilitation centers have firsthand knowledge of new and exciting treatments due to affiliations with the local hospitals and universities. I felt safe knowing that I was trusting my life with experts who were on the cusp of new and great things in alcohol treatment.

The City if Full of Comradery

Another thing I loved about doing my rehab in Boston is the comradery that exists there. The people are genuine, and they truly care about you. I know the people in my home town are great, but here things are so much different. These folks felt like they wanted me to make it. I felt like my support system was massive, and I always had someone to talk too.

They design their rehabilitation programs with the comfort and needs of individuals like me and you in mind. I was away from my family, but they became family. I made connections there that I keep in contact with. These people saw me at my worst and helped me to fight to get my life back. We will always be bonded in some way. Plus, who doesn’t love the gorgeous Boston accent?

There Are Four Seasons to Enjoy

I went into rehab during the winter. Winter is always a sad time for me anyway due to my seasonal affective disorder. I found a dual diagnosis center that could help me with both issues. It was also a good time to take off work and get better. If you are a weather buff and don’t have all the seasons where you live, then you will enjoy the fact that Boston has red and yellow leaves in the autumn and plenty of snow in the winter.

Picking the Best Facility in The Boston Metro Area

Deciding the facility that could help me best took some investigative work. I wanted to make sure before I made such a trip that I was picking the right center. I did a ton of research, made sure my insurance would cover the place I selected, and I knew I made the right choice. A few phone calls to the admissions department, and I had things set up for my trip.

My family accompanied me on my journey, and they left me to do the recovery process. I spend 60 days drying out, learning how to change my destiny, and discovering why I became an addict in the first place. I found I am not a wrong person; I just have a disease. It’s no different than having diabetes or high blood pressure. We can have genetic links, or it can be something that we do to self-medicate.

I will always look on my days in Boston and remember that it was the place and people that helped me put my life back together. I was a business professional with a drinking problem. I didn’t want everyone in my personal life, and I needed to go away and get better. Massachusetts was the place that made it happen.