How to Stop Drinking Alcohol: A Guide to a Better Life
Excessive drinking can have a profound impact on every aspect of your life, including relationships with others. Quitting alcohol can be a big change. That’s why we created this guide on how to stop drinking alcohol and stay sober for good.
If you struggle with an addiction to alcohol, Zinnia Health is here to offer you hope and guidance. Our team of experts provides effective treatment options tailored to your individual needs, such as detoxification and inpatient or outpatient care. Contact us today at (855) 430-9439 for more information about treatment plans, or reach out to our alcohol hotlines for immediate support and guidance.
What Is the Best Way to Stop Drinking Alcohol?
The best way to stop drinking alcohol is to seek medical advice from a healthcare professional. This can include therapy, medication, and support from support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous.
Alcoholism is a chronic condition, and recovery is a process that may require ongoing support and management. Many people find it beneficial to start with things like:
- Implementing alcohol-free days
- Participating in Dry January
- Finding a new hobby
- Addressing self-care by starting an exercise routine or meditation practice
- Finding support services
How Do I Train Myself Not to Drink Alcohol?
A huge part of training yourself not to drink involves transforming your identity into a person who chooses not to drink. You can actively work to replace negative thoughts and beliefs about abstinence with positive ones.
You may also need to practice new social skills and activities to stay away from the places where alcohol is served.
For those who are heavily dependent on alcohol, a doctor can prescribe medications to reduce cravings and support abstinence.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the most common drugs used to treat alcohol dependence are acamprosate, disulfiram, and naltrexone. Doctors may also prescribe medication to manage alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Participating in therapy or 12-step programs can also provide you with the emotional tools and environment that will help you stay sober.
Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for breaking free from alcoholism, so it’s important to tailor your treatment plan according to your own needs.
Will I Be Able to Stop Drinking Alcohol?
It is possible to stop drinking alcohol. Many people have found success in doing so.
According to the National Institute on Drug Use (NIDA), addiction is a treatable disorder. The advancement of multiple research-backed approaches has been successful in helping people break away from their dependencies and lead successful lives in recovery.
Zinnia Health understands how difficult it can be to manage alcohol use disorder (AUD), so we’ve created a range of evidence-based treatments customized for each individual. Detox services help eliminate withdrawal symptoms, inpatient care provides an intensive residential experience, and outpatient care assists with active recovery. If you’re ready to start your journey toward sobriety and recovery, don’t hesitate to call us 24/7 at (855) 430-9439.
What Habits Can Replace Drinking?
There are many healthy habits that can replace drinking habits, such as:
1. Exercising Regularly
Many people suffering from substance use disorders (SUDs) have found that regular exercise is a great way to replace drinking. Exercise can help to reduce stress and cravings, as well as provide an outlet for productive energy.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with strength-building activities like weightlifting, it is possible to grow or sustain your muscle mass and power. This is important for people who have lost muscle tone due to heavy drinking.
Other options offered at fitness centers and online include dance, yoga, and martial arts.
Eating a balanced diet that’s full of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can help to improve overall health and reduce cravings for alcohol.
Adding healthy snacks like nuts and seeds between meals can also provide an alternative way to manage hunger during times when you would have typically drank alcohol.
Meditation can help to reduce cravings, improve mental clarity, and increase relaxation. Studies have found that mindfulness-based interventions are effective in helping people cope with SUD.
To make meditation a habit, try committing to 10-15 minutes a day, or start with guided relaxation videos online.
Spending time with supportive friends and family can help to reduce the urge to drink alcohol. Engaging in conversations that don’t revolve around drinking can be especially beneficial.
Activities you can do with friends include:
- Playing board games
- Going for a walk in the park
- Taking an exercise class
5. Spending Time Outdoors
Nature offers a calming environment for recovery. Being outside can lead to improved physical activity, reduced stress and cravings, better sleep quality, and a more positive outlook.
Activities like gardening, biking, or kayaking can help to replace the urge to drink with healthier options.
Creative outlets like drawing, painting, and sculpting can help to provide an alternative means of expression and distraction.
According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, many people use visual art therapy to work through trauma and other difficult emotions.
What Are the Benefits of Quitting Drinking?
The benefits of quitting drinking include:
1. Improved Health
Quitting drinking can help improve overall physical and mental health. Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, so when it’s consumed in large amounts, it can cause dehydration, fatigue, poor concentration, high blood pressure, and other physical effects.
According to MedlinePlus, alcohol abuse can lead to serious illnesses like liver disease and cancer
2. Enhanced Relationships
Alcohol can affect the way people perceive and interact with each other. Quitting drinking can help to reduce arguments, restore trust, and create a more balanced relationship between family members and friends
3. Increased Self-Confidence
Drinking alcohol can lead to risky behaviors that can damage one’s reputation and self-esteem. Sobriety helps to restore one’s self-confidence and allows them to focus on healthy activities that make them feel more in control of their life
4. Improved Career Prospects
Quitting drinking can help improve job performance and professional opportunities. It may also lead to increased motivation and productivity at work
5. Increased Energy
Alcohol can lead to fatigue, so quitting drinking can help to restore one’s energy levels. This means that individuals can pursue hobbies and other activities they enjoy more frequently
6. More Money
Quitting drinking can help to save money that would have been spent on alcohol and related activities. This money can be used for other things, like traveling, investing in hobbies, or saving for the future
Does Quitting Drinking Improve Your Life?
Yes, quitting drinking can improve your life in many ways. To explore the full benefits, seek out content produced by former heavy drinkers, including:
- Books: Books such as We Are the Luckiest: The Surprising Magic of a Sober Life by Laura McKowen and The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober: Discovering a happy, healthy, wealthy alcohol-free life by Catherine Gray can help to provide rich insight into the benefits of sobriety
- Podcasts: There are many podcasts dedicated to sobriety and recovery, such as The Sobriety Collective and Sober Vibes
Stop Drinking With Zinnia Health Today
Drinking alcohol can have serious consequences for your physical and mental health. While moderate drinking may be beneficial in some cases, excessive consumption of alcohol has been linked to a variety of problems, including depression, liver damage, heart disease, and more.
If you or a loved one struggle with alcohol addiction or are looking for ways to cut down, Zinnia Health is here to help. We provide a range of evidence-based treatments and therapies to help you achieve sobriety and reclaim your life. To get started, call our helpline 24/7 at (855) 430-9439.