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Fighting Alcoholism With Drugs – Part 2

alcohol help

This is the final part of the 2-article piece on drugs that can help alcoholics either curb or stop drinking completely.

The first article discussed Antabuse and Naltrexone. This piece will describe one drug that is approved for use, and a second that may soon be widely accepted by health authorities.


This drug is taken orally three times each day.

  • How does it work? Campral works by acting on the brains chemical messenger system. It is understood to create a noticeable reduction in symptoms suffered by alcoholics who abstain from drinking for extended periods.
  • Reaction: The symptoms in question are often a reason that an alcoholic going through the early stages of recovery relapses and returns to drinking. There are numerous symptoms involved. Common ones are lowering levels of mood, insomnia, restlessness and anxiety. Once these symptoms are relived it eases the pressure on an alcoholic to continue drinking.
  • Downside: Different studies have shown different results, some more positive than others. The other factor is ensuring that a recovering alcoholic takes the drug 3 times each day. For many this is asking too much.


This is an approved drug in various countries for treating those patients who suffer from seizures. Its effects are also seen to help alcoholics maintain abstinence, but it is not yet fully approved for this purpose.

It works in a similar way to Campral. How effective Topamax will be if approved remains to be seen, but studies have proven positive to date.

Drugs alone will not heal alcoholism:

It is important to understand that drugs alone will not ‘heal’ addiction. They can certainly help in a structured recovery program that is accompanied by an alcoholic’s strength, desire and willingness to leave alcohol where it belongs; in the dim and distant past.

Three complimentary treatments:

Therapy and treatment for alcoholics vary. There is certainly no ‘one-fits-all’ recovery program or method, but 3 models that have proved successful are:


Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is an extremely popular form of treatment that produces positive results for those striving to beat addiction. It is a type of psychotherapy which focusses on the identification and modification of thought patterns and negative thoughts.

12-step program:

Initially brought into being by Alcoholics Anonymous and used throughout its membership this program has been taken by other clinics and organisations, modified and used successfully in the treatment of alcoholism for countless men and women.

Motivational Enhancement Therapy:

This type of therapy works through counsellor and client cooperation in terms of discussing and agreeing a personal recovery plan. This plan is aimed at changing the way addicts think of themselves. Just as importantly it helps them reveal and express motivations to change their ways.

Everyone is different:

Because everyone is different it stands to reason that differing therapy and treatment methods will vary.

It is vital an alcoholic understands treatment-related options, and is aware of the effects of associated medication that will most effectively help them abstain from alcohol and the raft of physical and mental pain alcoholism can bring.

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