The Facts About Drunk Driving
Driving under the influence of alcohol is not just a risky choice, but is also illegal. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), driving while impaired accounts for nearly one third of all traffic related deaths in the U.S. Individuals struggling with an addiction to alcohol may feel like they are capable of drunk driving safely and engage in it frequently. Each time someone drives while intoxicated, they risk their own safety and the safety of everyone around them on the road. Discover the facts surrounding this common problem and how addicted men and women can seek help.
Why Do People Drive while Intoxicated?
For most people, drunk driving seems like an obvious bad choice and is something to avoid entirely. However, individuals suffering from an alcohol addiction have a different perspective. It is important to keep in mind that addiction is considered a disease of the mind and body. This means that it requires professional care to overcome. Substances such as alcohol severely impair people’s ability to make sound judgments. This results in poor decision making while under the influence that they may or may not remember once they are sober.
In fact, alcohol is known for not only boosting self confidence but also limiting the brain’s ability to avoid potentially life threatening situations. This results in a slower reaction time than normal. For example, a drunk driver may not be able to avoid a fatal car crash simply because they didn’t sense the obvious danger or urgency like a sober individual would. In addition to this, higher self confidence created by alcohol may make it more likely for an individual to choose to drive in the first place. They may justify their choice by assuring themselves that they are a good driver. Regardless of the reasons behind why people choose to drive intoxicated in the first place, the fact of the matter remains that it is illegal, unsafe and signifies the presence of a serious addiction to alcohol.
What Are the Signs of Alcohol Addiction?
Alcohol addiction and alcohol abuse are not the same conditions. Abuse is believed to be a stepping stone to a full blown addiction. It may start off at a young age such as during the teen or young adult years of one’s lifespan and then reappear later on in life in some cases. Alcohol abusers tend to engage in frequent social drinking that gradually starts to interfere with their daily routine and responsibilities. Their drinking habits may start to interfere with their finances as well. Alcohol abusers often make risky choices as well, such as driving under the influence. The point at which abuse becomes addiction is when the individual loses control over their ability to stop consuming alcoholic drinks. This can be difficult to notice because most addicts will not admit that they lack control.
Other signs can indicate a serious addiction. Physical red flags such as constant dizzy spells or impaired gait, redness or sallow skin and aches and pains are all associated with alcohol addiction. Individuals may also have constant mood swings, engage in self isolation and experience depression. In order to prevent health and legal consequences, professional treatment should be sought out immediately.
What is Detox?
Detoxification is an excellent starting point in the recovery process. This process is typically conducted in a medical setting under the supervision of doctors and nurses. It enables the body to release harmful toxins in a stable and healthy manner. Detoxification also allows addicts to work through their withdrawal symptoms with professional support which can significantly reduce the risk of relapse.
Once a patient has fully detoxed, the next step is rehabilitation. Most people opt for in house rehab because it is the most effective and intensive form of care. However, some people are unable to commit to the residential requirements due to responsibilities at home or in their workplace. Cases such as these may find outpatient rehab more attainable. Outpatient treatment does not offer 24/7 supervision like residential programs, making it ineffective for anyone struggling with a long term addiction or who lack support at home.
During treatment, a variety of different resources and therapies are used to address all aspects of addiction. Therapies such as individual counseling, group therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy are popular forms. Recreational activities and fitness may also be provided. They can be an excellent way for patients to work through cravings and triggers in a healthy way and develop coping skills that they can use later on.
Once a patient completes treatment, after care services may be provided to them to prevent relapse and monitor their progress. After care helps ease the transition between rehabilitation and independent living. Many people actively engage in community based programs as well. Alcoholics Anonymous and SMART Recovery are two of the leading options for recovering alcoholics. These programs are free of charge and provide a reliable source of support from other people also going through the recovery process.
Driving under the influence of alcohol is a risky choice that can lead to serious legal consequences and even death in some cases. Help is within reach. Anyone struggling with an addiction to alcohol should contact their local rehabilitation centers to begin their own recovery journey before it’s to late.