Alcohol Use Disorder

When uncontrolled drinking affects your life, we can help

Our approach to alcohol use disorder

We understand that alcohol use disorder can significantly impact your life and the lives of your loved ones. That’s why our compassionate team of specialists is committed to helping you understand your condition,  review your treatment options and aid you in developing coping mechanisms to lead a sober life. We understand the science, emotions and challenges and will help you every step of the way.

Signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorder

Alcoholism, is a chronic disease characterized by uncontrolled drinking and preoccupation with alcohol. The inability to control the drinking is due to both physical and emotional dependence on alcohol.  If you notice any of these signs and symptoms, it's crucial to seek professional help. It's important to remember that the diagnosis of alcohol use disorder is based on how alcohol affects your life, not just the amount you drink.

Here are some common signs and symptoms of alcoholism:

  • an intense craving or strong need to drink
  • inability to manage drinking,
  • continued alcohol use despite negative consequences
  • withdrawal symptoms when rapidly decreasing or stopping drinking, such as insomnia, shakiness, nausea, or a racing heart

When to seek care

In addition to sign and symptoms, consider the following questions to assist you in determining if you could benefit from being evaluated for alcohol use disorder.

In the past year, have you:

  • Had times when you drank more or for longer than you meant to?
  • Tried (or wanted to try) multiple times to cut back or stop drinking, but you couldn’t?
  • Spent a lot of time drinking or getting over the effects of alcohol?
  • Felt a strong need, urge, or craving to drink?
  • Found that drinking or its effects kept you from doing work, going to school, or taking care of your family?
  • Continued to drink even when it caused tension with family and friends?
  • Skipped out on or decreased activities you enjoy so you could drink?
  • More than once found yourself doing risky things during or after drinking, like driving or having unsafe sex?
  • Kept drinking even though it made you blackout, feel sad or anxious, or made another health problem worse?
  • Had to drink more than you once did to get the same effects?
  • Felt withdrawal symptoms from alcohol, like insomnia, shakiness, nausea, or a racing heart?

The more questions you answer yes to, the greater your need for evaluation.

Diagnosing alcohol use disorder

  • Assessment: A healthcare professional such as your family doctor or behavioral health specialist will ask you questions about your drinking habits and how they have affected your life. There is no specific number of drinks per day or week that means you have an alcohol use disorder. The diagnosis depends on how alcohol affects your life.
  • Diagnosis: Your healthcare provider will diagnose alcohol use disorder based on your answers to the questions and any physical or mental health problems that may be related to your drinking.

Treatments for alcohol use disorder

WellSpan Behavioral Health Specialists take a personalized approach to treating alcohol use disorder. Our treatment plans are tailored to your individual needs and risks, with the goal of helping you achieve lasting recovery.

Our treatment options include:

  • Counseling and behavioral therapy: These therapies can help you understand the root causes of your alcohol use disorder and develop coping mechanisms for managing your cravings and triggers.
  • Medications that reduce the desire to drink: These medications can help reduce your cravings for alcohol and make it easier to abstain from drinking.
  • Medical detoxification if needed to stop drinking safely: If you are physically dependent on alcohol, you may need to undergo medical detoxification to safely withdraw from alcohol. This process can be done in a hospital or outpatient setting.
  • Mutual support groups: These groups can provide you with a network of support from others who are also in recovery from alcohol use disorder.

No matter which treatment options you choose, you can be confident that you will receive high-quality care from our team of experienced and compassionate professionals. We are here to help you every step of the way on your journey to recovery.

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Comprehensive treatment options

We offer a wide range of treatment options for alcohol use disorder, including medical detoxification, medication, counseling, and support groups. We will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that meets your individual needs.

Convenient locations

We have convenient locations throughout South Central Pennsylvania, making it easy for you to get the care you need. Our team is dedicated to providing comprehensive support and services to help you succeed.

Supportive environment

We understand that overcoming alcohol use disorder can be challenging, but you don't have to do it alone. Our team is here to provide you with the support and encouragement you need to achieve your goals.