Somebody to lean on: The importance of social support in alcoholism recovery

alcoholism recovery

Alcoholism is a severe disease that can take over your life if left untreated. Therefore, it’s essential to get help from professionals and build a solid social support network if you struggle with alcoholism.

Having people you can rely on to provide emotional support, and practical assistance can differentiate success and relapse in alcoholism recovery.

What is social support?

The dictionary definition of “support” is to aid or assist someone or something in executing a task. This is precisely what social support does. It aids us in managing all the aspects of our lives, especially during difficult times like alcoholism recovery.

Social support can come in various shapes and forms. It can be in counseling, financial assistance, emotional support, etc. The key is to ensure a robust support system to fall back on when you need it the most.

Why is social support necessary?

Social support is vital, and here is why.

Help managing symptoms

Recovering from alcoholism is a complicated process and one that often requires professional help. However, social support from family and friends can also be essential for managing symptoms and promoting recovery. The physical effects of alcoholism can be difficult to cope with alone, and in these instances, social support is necessary to help patients manage their symptoms.

Common side effects of alcohol abuse that may require support and attention from a loved one include short-term effects like vision impairment and extreme shifts in mood the long-term impacts like cancer, nerve damage, and liver disease.

In addition, patients may also need help dealing with financial stressors and relationship problems that often accompany alcoholism. While overcoming addiction is ultimately the individual’s responsibility, social support can play a vital role in promoting recovery.

A sense of inclusion

Social support is like a bridge that connects you with others at all times, meaning you have an unending source of love and care. You have people you can turn to who will be there for you in times of need.

If you’re staying in rehab, you have an automatic support system. People going through the same experience surround you. These people will understand you better, and you will not feel so alone in your recovery journey.

Eases loneliness

Alcoholism can be a very lonely disease and make you feel alone even if you are around people. But when you have a strong and supportive social network, you are less likely to feel lonely or stressed.

You don’t have to worry about being lonely as you will have people to talk to and share your experiences with. You will also have people who can understand you better and help you recover.

How to get started with a social support group

The best way to strengthen your social support system is to join a support group like Alcoholics Anonymous. These groups are full of people going through the same thing as you are.

Not only this, but AA is also very helpful in the recovery process. It is a support group that can be highly beneficial to your recovery journey. You will meet people in the same boat as you, and you can motivate each other.

In addition, you can join individual support groups or group support sessions. Separate support groups are one-to-one conversations with someone going through a similar situation. On the other hand, group support sessions are sessions where you are in a group with other people going through the same thing.

Wrapping up

If you are struggling with alcoholism, having a support system like a social support group will aid your recovery. You will have people who will encourage and encourage you on your journey to sobriety. Different types of social support groups exist, so it’s essential to find one that fits your needs. If you don’t know where to start, reach out to your local AA chapter, or contact a rehabilitation facility.

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About the Author: John Watson

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