Do you need to consider yourself to be an “alcoholic” before you go to rehab? The life-changing experience of getting treatment can change everything. But do you need to wait until things deteriorate to ask for help?
In this article, we’ll explore, how long you should wait before asking for help, if at all, the first steps towards recovery, the dangers of waiting to ask for help, and the 7 Symptoms of Alcohol Misuse.
How Long Should You Wait Before Seeking Help?
If your drinking habits are affecting your life, then it’s time to evaluate whether rehab might be the best option. You don’t need to wait, asking for help sooner can put a stop to the inevitable, severe negative consequences that inevitably happen and progress as substance abuse continues and addiction develops.
You don’t need to wait until your symptoms are severe and your life has fallen apart – Please don’t! No need to ‘hit bottom’. Asking for help sooner is always the best approach. As the wise Dutch philosopher Desiderius Erasmus put it:
“Prevention is Better than Cure”
If you catch the disease early, before it gets a chance to have severe negative consequences on your life, then you’ll avoid a lot of pain for yourself and loved ones. Your healing experience will be deeper and more personally fulfilling. Plus, you get to keep your health, self-respect, job, hobbies, social standing, loved ones, friends, and finances intact. Without treatment, alcoholism and other forms of addiction has a way of creeping up on people. If you catch it early you can stop it in its tracks. But left to its own devices the disease pours down every crack of your life until everything is negatively impacted if not destroyed.
EVERYONE who comes to Serenity Vista, regardless of where they may be on the continuum of disease onset and progression, expresses profound gratitude for the life-changing experience. An opportunity to pause and look at life, for spiritual exploration, self-reflection, personal development, grounding, recharging/rejuvenating and health improvement – so why wait?
Related: No One Is Immune to Addiction
Do I Need To Meet Diagnostic Criteria For Chemical Dependency To Go To Rehab?
Most traditional, institutional, US, government-sponsored, insurance accepting rehab facilities strictly require you to meet diagnostic criteria for chemical dependency. The main reason for this is to fulfill the accreditation and funding requirements of parent companies, governmental agencies, and insurance providers.
Serenity Vista is different. We’re completely private, not associated with any such agency, and don’t work with insurance companies. This gives us full autonomy to help those that want help in the best way that helps each individual.
Learn More: Our Holistic Approach
What Is The First Step Toward Recovery?
The first step is acknowledging there may even possibly be a problem. Often a friend or family member will be able to see the beginningn of a problem before you do, but that’s not always the case. Many people are experts at hiding their drinking or drug use problem.
Related: 3 Good Reasons To Go To Rehab
Many people seeking help may realize there is a problem or concern, but may not see it as full active addiction or “alcoholism”. We don’t require people ‘wait’ until some diagnostic criteria are met. This can lead to symptoms or consequences building up. If you think there may be a problem, we will help, before it gets worse.
We aren’t concerned with treating labels, but rather with helping individuals. Helping people thrive and live life with peace of mind and heart to their fullest potential.
What If It’s Not A “Real” Addiction?
Regardless of whether there’s a serious physical substance dependency or a more subtle “perception of a problem”, we’re here to help. You might want to do deep inner work, explore spirituality, work on self-improvement, or improve your quality of life. You don’t need to meet any specific criteria to come to Serenity Vista to regroup, heal or grow.
Some of our guests may feel they have their drinking under control, but want to find a deeper sense of well-being, explore life’s purpose and meaning, enhance inner peace and improve relationships.
Serenity Vista offers a personalized, individualized rehabilitation service that is designed to meet the needs of each person. We’re not looking for problems to fix. Rather than being problem-oriented, Serenity Vista is a solution-based treatment center. We shift from coping with problems to living in the solution.
Related: Does My Loved One Need Rehab?
Waiting Can Be A Dangerous Game
Waiting to go to rehab until things go terribly wrong can be a dangerous game. It won’t only tear your life apart, it can also cause serious damage to your children and people close to you. Shockingly, 7.5 million children in the US live with a parent who is abusing alcohol. There is increasing recognition of what has been coined “secondhand drinking” as having serious negative effects on those in the life of the alcohol abuser or alcoholic.
We designed our treatment facility to accept all adults that are affected in any way from addiction. This includes codependents and adult children of alcoholics (ACOA). We believe that codependency deserves rehab too.
People don’t have to wait until damage is done, or progresses, to ask for help. Waiting until everything falls apart doesn’t seem right. Problems from substance abuse can touch all aspects of your life, and can be irreversible.
7 Symptoms of Alcohol Misuse
The U.S. National Library of Medicine classifies people who might be experiencing distress or harm to themselves but not necessarily “alcoholic” as suffering from an alcohol use disorder. They say that 18 million people in the US are currently suffering from some form of alcohol use disorder. They also state that a lot of the effects of alcohol abuse can be felt by the person who is struggling with alcoholism.
If the problem persists any of the following can occur:
- Pastimes, social activities, hobbies, and passions diminish
- Physical injury can occur to self or others
- Drinking can make emotional issues worse
- Educational or career development opportunities fade or are lost
- Professional life is negatively impacted
- Family life relationships become strained or broken
- Memory loss and brain damage can gradually take hold
The Bottom Line
Alcoholism, or other forms of addiction, including codependency, are progressive illnesses that, if caught early, will do the least damage to those suffering from the disease and people close to them. The results of leaving it too late can be devastating. Asking for help, even when it might seem early, or as though the problem isn’t too bad, is the best approach. It’s never too early to ask for help. You don’t have to wait until it’s ‘really bad’ to go to rehab. If the thought of going to rehab has even crossed your mind, the best time to go to rehab is ‘now’!