Taking the decision to quit drinking requires a lot of courage. Once decided, it takes a strong resolve to navigate through cravings and maintain sobriety. Sometimes, even after taking a long-term treatment, people become vulnerable when they find themselves in circumstances where it is hard to resist alcohol.
However, with a little foresight and planning, one can manage to steer clear of the cravings and continue the sober journey. Here are some tips which can help keep cravings in control:
- Throwing out bottles of alcohol from home – During cravings, it is natural for a person to reach out for alcohol available around. If stored at home, it will be like an open invitation to drink. One must discard all the bottles of alcohol from home and bring in nonalcoholic beverages.
- Staying away from risky situations – It is important to steer clear of risky situations, like one should avoid hanging out with the friends who consume alcohol. Even visiting bars and pubs should also be avoided for socializing. Many places in the United States have bars that do not serve alcohol and one should visit these places to hang out.
- Calling up friend – Whenever the cravings are unbearable, it is prudent to reach for a friend who supports one’s sobriety goals. This way, one will have someone who provides support at a critical time. It is important that this friend doesn’t drink and perhaps is someone who has been through similar circumstances.
- Eating something sweet yet healthy – The reason people start putting on weight while drinking is because alcohol has a lot of sugar. When people quit alcohol, they also grapple with sugar cravings. It can be handled by keeping handy something sweet but healthy. The options could be fruits of choice, dark chocolate, energy bars, energy drinks, frozen yogurt, etc.
- Feeling relaxed – During stressful situations, people are often tempted to reach for a glass of alcohol to calm their nerves. It is thus important to stay calm and collected, which can be achieved by practicing yoga, meditation, tai-chi, qigong, and mindfulness. One can also learn some art therapy, read self-help books and listen to soothing music.
- Joining support groups – It is important to have positive influences in life. This can be achieved by joining online and offline support groups that offer alcohol addiction support. One must be regular at the meetings as these groups offer a platform for communicating effectively with the group members, give vent to pent-up feelings and overcome the negativity.
- Eating nutritious diet – It is important to eat balanced and fortified meals to stay physically and mentally strong in order to avoid a relapse. One must drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and include fresh fruits and vegetables in diet. Complex and whole carbs available in wholegrain bread and pasta are better options than white flour or rice. Consuming healthy fats readily available in avocados, fish and nuts is also a healthy practice.
- Exercising – Physical activity is known to regulate hormones like serotonin and dopamine. Besides, it helps one stay focused. Brisk walk, running, swimming, yoga, workout, etc. are really beneficial.
Road to recovery
Sometimes, despite best intentions, self-help techniques fail. In such cases, it is important to enroll for alcohol detox treatment under trained professionals who can help one achieve sobriety.