What are Alcohol Cravings?
Alcohol cravings are intense desires to use alcohol and may be prompted by internal and external stimuli. Side effects like this are normal for those attempting to quit alcohol. Several methods, most notably those derived from cognitive behavioral therapy, can assist individuals in managing their alcohol cravings. Medications are useful as well.
Warning Signs That Accompany Alcohol Cravings
Alcohol cravings are a sign of alcohol addiction. An almost overwhelming need for alcohol may result from alcohol cravings, which can be triggered by everything from happy to sad thoughts and sensations. There’s a part of yourself that wants to quit drinking, but there’s also a part of you that wants to continue to enjoy the euphoric benefits of alcohol. Although cravings might be quite challenging to overcome, they do not have to result in a relapse. Alcohol cravings are accompanied by the following signs of alcohol addiction.
- Loss of appetite
- Mood outbursts
- Low energy levels
Why Do People Experience Alcohol Cravings
Several internal and external factors might combine to set off alcohol cravings. The desire to consume alcohol might come from inside, triggered by ideas and emotions. Negative emotions like anger or sadness might trigger a need. External triggers can also set off alcohol cravings. These include photos of drinking with friends or flashbacks of listening to loud music in a pub. It is common to suffer cravings at the beginning of one’s alcohol addiction recovery. Those with chronic alcohol addiction and mental health difficulties are at a higher risk of experiencing alcohol cravings.
Ways of Effectively Managing Alcohol Addiction
Over the last several decades, scientists have developed a variety of effective drugs to aid those struggling with alcohol cravings, making it easier for them to cut down or give up on alcohol altogether. These include, but are not limited to:
- Naltrexone – This works by lowering a person’s desire to drink by counteracting the high they get from drinking.
- Topiramate – Like phenytoin, topiramate is often used to treat migraines and epileptic attacks. However, participants in clinical studies also reported a reduction in alcohol cravings.
- Baclofen – Originally developed to relieve muscle spasms in the back, baclofen is now being used to treat alcohol addiction. There have been reports of persons using this medication experiencing a decreased desire to drink alcohol.
- Mindfulness practice, e.g., meditation.
Meditation greatly complements alcohol addiction therapy by reducing alcohol cravings. Mindfulness is a sort of mental training that has its origins in ancient Buddhist practice. Mindfulness practice helps those recovering from substance abuse by helping them focus on the present and learning to accept their circumstances as they are.
Seek Quality Alcohol Addiction Treatment at Mallard Lake Detox Center in Houston
Cravings are a common indicator of alcohol addiction. Experiencing alcohol cravings after abstaining for a long time is obviously shocking. Our brains have been programmed to react to desires, but with enough forethought, patience, and time, they can be reprogrammed. Addiction recovery is a long and challenging journey.
Please contact Mallard Lake Detox Center for more information and assistance if you or a loved one are struggling with alcohol addiction. There is no shame in seeking addiction treatment; substance use disorders are quite prevalent and can be successfully managed.