Alcohol Addiction And Detoxification
You can have fun without it and stay healthier too
I have epilepsy and realised very young that alcohol and epilepsy do not mix and alcohol and anticonvulsant medication also do not mix.
A no brainer it is safer for me to stay off alcohol. It is strange thou when i say I am a non drinker I am still looked at weirdly like I am some nerdy naturopath on a health kick. Maybe I am but my real friends are not judgemental and know I can have a lot of fun and lots of laughs without a drink.
There are lots of great drinks that are non alcholic and if you put them in a nice glass they taste great and you do not wake up with hangovers. Another bonus is our kids do not think it normal to drink at every social occasion and so are not tempted as youngsters to try alcohol at family functions. My daughter learnt about alcohol and the effects on the brain development so now is even less keen on starting to drinking. The brain for a girl does not develop til 25 years of age and for a boy 35 years. Yet most teenagers drink before 18 years of age. They learn it is "normal socialisation" and learn "you need to drink to have fun". Are we sending our children/teeenagers the wrong message.
Maybe it could be a new revolution to get friendship groups together that do not need alcoholic drinks to socialise. There is also the alcoholics and they need to feel they can still socialise without alcohol. They definitely do not need peer group pressure and made to feel left out. The great Australian drink up is maybe not so great a tradition.
There is a new group in Melbourne that have had it on social media to see if you can go 12 months off alcohol and I say it is a viability and you could improve your health immensely.
Maybe 2017 for you can be alcohol free!!!
Most people may enjoy the random drink of alcohol yet in some cases this can take an evil turn for the worst. A simple drink over time can become an addiction. One drink, in these cases, no longer aids relaxation but it takes more and more alcohol to get the desired response to what started off as the one simple drink. The sad thing is that any alcohol consumption that turns from an occasional pleasure to a need starts to effect the brain, relationships, health and finances. When drinking becomes excess of 3-4 times a week the liver gets little time to recover in between drinks. For most part if you are not having an alcohol free 2017 then maybe aim for twice a week maximum.
A common response I hear at the clinic is “ I have not got a drinking problem I only drink one glass a day” . However the trouble even with the one drink a day is that the liver and body does not get a break and it becomes a habit that can be hard to break. Before you know it there is neurobiological health influences and the emotional relationship with regular alcohol and consequences of this. another issue I see is alcohol in combination with orthodox medicines. I spoke about me and antiseptic medication but even the combination with parasol can be very dangerous and very hard on the liver.
The causing factors of addictions such as alcohol can be psychological, genetic and biological. There is not a specific personality for it can effect all types of people. In saying this it is quite common to see high alcohol consumption run in families.
In looking at the science behind addiction a key mechanism in the transition from normal alcohol consumption to addictive alcohol consumption is via a Corticotropin Releasing Factor ( CRF). Signalling CRF neutron activation may contribute to a loss of control. For some people they have a gene combination that they are prone to addictive tendencies. Alcohol and the thought of drinking alcohol can increase dopamine levels in the amygdala.
Gaba and Glutamate are the neurotransmitters in these people that are the nail in the coffin so to speak when it comes to addiction. Acute alcohol consumption inhibits glutamate receptor activity hence increasing GABA. The good thing with increased GABA is you feel more relaxed but the detrimental effect is that it also can increase the alcohol toxicity. The hardest thing is that over time you need more alcohol to get the desired relaxing effect.
Here at the clinic the first decision to change your alcohol consumption is the decision to reduce it dramatically, stop combining it with medications or to cut it out completely. This decision must come from you as an individual. We as practitioners here can help with the detox and help with education in regards to the effects and combinations but the ultimate decision is yours. Then there are substances we can suggest like cysteine for this helps regulate excess glutamate and helps reduce the cravings for alcohol. Another substance used is zinc for this aids the frontal lobe of the brain with helps impulse and concentration and decision making. Magnolia can be used for anxiety and Vitamin C for detox.
One theory to remember is that if we focus just on the addiction some people find this like focusing on the glass half empty literally!!!! However if you focus on happiness and connection and try to fix your environment and life it is like a healthy distraction and the need for alcohol comes secondary. Discover ways to find happiness and friendships and in this way the good distraction helps divert the focus form the alcohol consumption. Johann Hart speaks of addiction problems being the "adversion to your current life" in which the answer is to reconnect people and give people a reason to get out of bed everyday. They have tried this in Portugal and it works. Food for thought. People are lonely and we need to work with addictions via helping connections in our world. You may have connections with the wrong group of friends and the answer may lie in seeking new friendships that create more fulfilment and less alcohol expectation.
Programs that may help are Alcoholic Anonymous but for some programs like Smart Recovery Australia are better, or resorts like Sanctuary Recovery House. Everyone is different and may need different approaches. You need to find what works for you not just in the short term but the long term. Please talk to your practitioner about this if you feel you need some guidance.
You can live a full happy life without alcohol.