Alcohol abuse is a common problem that affects millions of people, but are medications necessary to stop the substance abuse? Every individual is unique, and some people can stop their alcohol intake on their own. Others may require professional help, and there are some medications which may be used during alcohol abuse treatment in order to eliminate or manage withdrawal symptoms or prevent further alcohol abuse. There are also medications that can be used to keep you sober while you are in the recovery process so that you do not relapse. Someone who has been abusing alcohol for a long time may have developed a physical dependence on the drug, and without medical detox that provides any medications needed the result could be seizures and other serious or even life threatening problems.
Some of the medications that may be provided for alcohol abuse include:
- Anti anxiety drugs like benzodiazepam and other benzodiazepenes. These drugs work to relax the body, and they have been shown to be effective at treating certain withdrawal symptoms like delirium tremens and seizures.
- Seizure medications may be used to prevent or treat any seizures, as well as other serious withdrawal symptoms that could increase the risk of a seizure while detoxing.
- Disulfiram, also called Antabuse, is a drug that can help someone stay in recovery. This medication makes you ill when combined with alcohol and it can prevent a relapse during recovery.
- Naltrexone prevents the drinker from experiencing the typical pleasure that they get from consuming alcohol. This removes the motivation to drink because the effects are not felt.
- Acomprosate can reduce cravings for alcohol.