Alcohol

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Treatment for Alcohol Problems: Finding and Getting Help

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The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health, has developed a guide to help individuals and families understand available treatment options. Treatment for Alcohol Problems: Finding and Getting Help covers the latest research-based treatments and what to consider when choosing among them. 

An estimated 17 million Americans currently have an alcohol use disorder. However, research suggests that only a fraction of people with alcohol problems seek professional help. No matter how severe the problem may seem, most people with AUD can benefit from some form of treatment.   

This new resource helps physicians start a conversation with their patients about a wide variety of treatment options, including effective but underutilized approaches.  

The guide provides detailed descriptions of the two types of professionally-led treatments shown to benefit people with alcohol use disorders, which are:

  •          Established behavioral treatments which focus on changing drinking behaviors
  •          Medications, which are often coupled with behavioral treatment 

The guide also includes information about mutual-support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous. 

In addition to the information on treatment options, the guide offers patients advice on when and how to get help including:

  •          Signs of an alcohol problem
  •          Questions patients can ask their doctors to help guide their treatment choices
  •          Advice for friends and family
  •          New medications in the pipeline 

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