resisting alcohol cravingsFighting alcohol cravings is tough. It is the hardest point on the road to recovery where many recovered alcoholics give into their needs and suffer a relapse. Alcohol addiction is the leading substance abuse problem not just in the United States, but worldwide. Millions of people live their lives with alcohol, hoping to drink their problems away.

Experts from drug and alcohol rehabilitation clinics suggest that how you view your own cravings will determine how much power they have over you. You’ll most likely feel powerless against them if you believe a craving won’t go away once it has started. You’ll also most likely fail if you think that the only way to deal with a craving is to drink. This is the cognitive component of alcohol addiction.

Determining what things in your life trigger cravings and how you can avoid them is important for fighting alcohol cravings. Drug rehabilitation centres suggest these methods for dealing with cravings:

Distraction

This method helps move your attention away from negative thoughts or uncomfortable feelings to a different focus. When you feel the need to drink alcohol, concentrate on your surroundings and try to describe them to yourself in detail. Change the scenery; go for a walk, a bike ride, or a drive if you are uncomfortable with wherever you are at the moment. It would also help if you talk to someone, such as your friend, relative, or counsellor. These can help you get away from that loop running in your head.

Imagery

Whenever you feel tempted to grab a bottle, command your craving to stop, then refocus on a relaxing location, like your favourite peaceful spot. Replace the images of good times with alcohol in your head with the bad times, perhaps your lowest ebb. Remember when you felt ashamed and disgusted, and ask yourself if you want to go back there. If it’s depressing images that are giving you cravings, imagine an optimistic view of your near future without alcohol.

Activity

Boredom is the one of the biggest challenges for people who stop drinking alcohol. Often, it is the reason they give in and resort to drinking again. Trying new activities can help fight boredom and keep alcohol cravings at bay. Fill your schedule with activities that can get you busy throughout the week. Whether it’s a basketball game or an evening of bowling—without the beer—with your friends, new activities can help veer your thoughts away from alcohol.

Fighting alcohol cravings is difficult, but you can overcome the situation through some simple, recognized methods.

Sources:

http://alcoholrehab.com/international-rehab/ http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/alcoholanddrugs/index.shtml http://www.patient.co.uk/doctor/Alcoholism-and-Alcohol-Abuse-Management.htm