alcohol cravings

10 Tips for Handling Your Urges to Drink

Sometimes the thought of drinking alcohol can become too much.

It doesn’t matter how much you fight it. There are times where the cravings strike and are too strong to shake.

With around 17 million Americans suffering from alcohol abuse, more and more people are trying to quit the bottle.

If you find the fight is not going well and you can’t control your alcohol cravings, I’m here to offer some advice.

I know the battle can be long and very difficult, but these ten tips should help you on your road to recovery.

1) Avoidance

By far the best way to stem any cravings is to remove any possibility of coming into contact with triggers.

By avoiding high-risk situations where you are likely to drink, you greatly reduce the chances of you slipping. You can’t drink alcohol if it’s not available.

Don’t ever feel guilty declining social events where alcohol is around. Good friends will understand.

Your best weapon is the word “no”.

2) Coping With Triggers

These situations are not always possible to avoid, unfortunately.

If you do find yourself in situations where drinking is a possibility, make sure you recognize the triggers.

Give yourself time. If you find that the alcohol cravings aren’t subsiding, physically remove yourself from the premises.

Even if you just walk outside for some air or into a nearby bathroom. The key thing is to understand the trigger and excuse yourself from its clutch.

3) S.H.O.W.

This stands for Sickness, Hangover, Obesity, and Waste.

It’s essentially a reminder. Keeping this in mind will help you to remember all the bad things that come from drinking alcohol.

It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the good times that have been had. But it’s worth thinking forward to the day after.

The vomiting, the headaches, the blank memories, the embarrassment.

You know that those things aren’t worth it.

4) Call Someone

It doesn’t matter if it’s a friend, neighbor, family member or lover. During difficult periods, it sometimes helps to have that lifeline to talk to.

You don’t even have to talk about your situation. Just having someone on the other end of the phone (or in person) can be a good enough distraction.

If you find yourself in a situation of ‘to drink or not to drink’, take comfort in words with others. At this stage, it’s important to take your mind off alcohol.

5) Have Something to Eat

Often we replace one vice for another. But it’s important to be careful what we put into our bodies and how much.

Having said that, if you find yourself craving a drink, eating a meal can take care of the problem.

Some places recommend eating something sweet. This is probably because alcohol contains sugar, which your body is now missing.

If you don’t have anything sweet to hand, you can’t go wrong with eating fresh fruit and vegetables. These should curb the cravings while also providing a healthy alternative.

6) Get Some Exercise

More people are seeing the benefits of physical exercise, especially in the great outdoors.

Getting out of the house and focusing on self-care really does help you see the bigger picture in life, without needing a chemical to help you feel better.

Scientists are discovering more and more benefits to outdoor exercise.  Being in nature releases feel-good hormones like dopamine naturally.

Also, exercise helps you work toward a goal so you’re not caught in the constant cycle of thinking about using drugs or alcohol.

7) Keep Track of Your Urges

Sometimes it’s useful to be able to recognize if a pattern is emerging.

You may find that your urges are occurring at certain times of the day or in certain locations. If so, it might help to keep a record of when and where these urges are happening.

This could be as simple as writing in a journal.

Doing so will give you a clearer image of any repetition. From there, you can start to work out ways to cope or avoid these cravings in future.

8) Go To Church and Talk to a Pastor

Many of you reading this are probably already in some sort of rehab group or therapy session. For those who aren’t, it’s worth taking comfort in the help of others.

Of course, you have your friends and family. But it’s also very beneficial to surround yourself with like-minded individuals who are experiencing the same difficulties as you.

They might not be there for you 24/7, but rest assured that they will show their support when you next attend.

There will be local groups and sessions in your area that a quick search will reveal.

9) Take Your Mind off It

This sounds easier said than done. But if you’re in a situation in which you’re struggling to resist the call of alcohol, doing something different can help overcome it.

It doesn’t have to be anything outlandish. You could just switch on the TV. Maybe put in your favorite movie.

Some people find comfort in books, so you might find reading will help take your mind off it.

If you’re not sure what to do, maybe join a nearby sports club or invest in a new hobby.

It’s all about shifting focus away from your cravings.

10) Seek Medical Assistance

If you find that it’s becoming increasingly difficult, it may be time to visit your doctor or another medical professional.

Some people may feel they can ride it out, even without any help. However, many require professional assistance.

And that’s okay.

Going to your doctor does not mean you’re weak or that you’re close to giving up. Having the advice of a practitioner can give you the reassurance you need.

They may even be able to provide medication if it’s necessary (and if you don’t have any already).

Stop Those Alcohol Cravings Once and for All

If you’ve ever experienced an intervention, you know that alcohol effects more than just yourself.

Knowing how to deal with alcohol cravings is a significant step in helping to stem the addiction. With the help of loved ones, professionals and your own willpower, it’s a struggle you can overcome.

If you’re looking for Christian rehabilitation as well as more information on overcoming alcohol abuse, click the link here.

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