Treatment Center for Alcoholism

Alcoholism is an addiction to alcohol characterized by an inability to control drinking, developing a tolerance to alcohol, drinking in spite of problems that it causes, and experiencing cravings and withdrawal when not drinking. Some individuals are more susceptible to alcoholism than others, and while there is no cure, treatment at a highly reputable luxury alcohol rehab center supports the best positive outcomes.

For many people, recognizing they are struggling with alcohol addiction can take years. Once an individual can no longer deny their addiction and the negative effects it has on their mind, body, career, finances, and important relationships, it can be difficult to fully accept that they are at a turning point in the road. When they get to this point in their addiction, it is important to seek residential treatment for their alcoholism before it spirals any further out of control.

World-Class Alcohol Rehab at Alta Mira

One of the most important goals of our alcohol treatment program is to prepare clients for life after residential care. When clients leave treatment they have to face a lot of distractions, temptations, and triggers while trying to stay sober. At Alta Mira, clients learn many things that will help them later, such as trigger avoidance, relapse prevention, healthy coping strategies, and stress-relief techniques. Highlights of our alcoholism treatment program include:

  • State of the art care, including detoxification and therapy
  • Privacy and confidentiality
  • Luxury residences with private and shared room options
  • High-end, private-pay treatment
  • Comprehensive neuropsychological testing and assessments
  • Transformational recovery program with outstanding treatment outcomes

Getting help for alcoholism is a big decision. But it is an important and potentially life-transforming move for anyone who has tried to manage drinking on their own and failed.

What Is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism, also known as alcohol use disorder, is an addiction to alcohol or a pattern of misuse of alcohol that is problematic.

Exact causes of alcoholism are often difficult to identify, but anyone who misuses alcohol and drinks a lot is at risk of developing a dependence. Some people are also more genetically predisposed to any type of addictive disorder, which can cause a quicker deterioration from problem drinking to alcoholism. As with other addictions, drinking alcohol regularly and in large quantities can cause changes to the brain over time that make it difficult to stop drinking. Some of the known risk factors that make someone more vulnerable to developing alcoholism include:

  • A family history of alcoholism or other addictions
  • Beginning drinking at an early age
  • Binge drinking or steady drinking over a long period of time
  • Having a mental illness, especially untreated
  • Having a partner or friends that drink heavily
  • Childhood trauma

Alcoholism and Co-Occurring Disorders

It is not uncommon for alcoholism to occur with other disorders, especially mental illnesses. Any mental illness may co-occur with alcoholism, but depression and anxiety are the most common. The connection exists because some people with undiagnosed or untreated mental illnesses use alcohol to self-medicate. Drinking too much can also trigger symptoms of depression and anxiety or make them worse. Both addiction and mental illness also have common risk factors, another explanation for why they often co-occur.

There are also several physical health problems that can co-occur with alcoholism, mostly because of the damage alcohol abuse causes to the body over time. For example, fatty liver and alcoholic hepatitis are not uncommon in heavy drinkers because of how alcohol damages the liver. Also linked with alcoholism are chronic pancreatitis, malnutrition, cancer of the mouth, esophagus, and larynx, and dental problems.

Another common co-occurring issue with alcoholism is the abuse of other substances. People who misuse alcohol also may misuse illicit or prescription drugs for similar reasons. This can be very dangerous, though, as certain combinations of alcohol and drugs can increase physical health problems and even increase the risk of overdose. For example, mixing alcohol with other depressants, like benzodiazepines or opioids, is dangerous because of the additive effects.

Effective Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

There is no cure for any addiction, but when it is viewed as a chronic illness and treated accordingly alcoholism—or, alcohol use disorder—can be managed.

The most effective alcohol addiction treatment is a combination of strategies that include long-term care at a residential alcohol treatment center, behavioral therapies, social support, and treatment of any co-occurring conditions.

Residential alcohol rehab begins with a period of medically supervised detox. This is then followed by one-on-one therapy sessions that help the patient determine what underlies his or her drinking problems and that teach the patient how to change behaviors and make more positive choices. Effective treatment for alcoholism also typically includes working in groups, family therapy sessions, alternative therapies, nutrition, exercise, and planning for ongoing care after the residential stay is over.

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Knowing When It’s Time For an Alcohol Rehab Center

Getting help for problematic alcohol use is a big decision. But it is an important and potentially life-transforming move for anyone who has tried to manage drinking on their own and failed. Alta Mira is staffed by caring professionals with experience helping people make long-term changes in their behaviors.

Only you can decide it is time to stop this decline in alcohol addiction. Only you can make the first move, but you can move into the arms of people who care and who understand the challenges you face. Realizing you have a problem and having the desire to change are motivating factors for getting help.

Reaching out to loved ones and professionals who understand alcohol addiction should be your next move. It’s frightening to think about going through withdrawal, our medically supervised detox can help you manage the symptoms of withdrawal. As you stabilize during our 30 Day Detox, Stabilization, and Assessment period, you will physically and mentally be preparing yourself for the next phase of your recovery transformation.

How to Help a Loved One Get Treatment for Alcoholism

Addiction is not a choice nor a sign of weakness. It is a condition of the brain that can respond to targeted treatment. When your loved one comes to Alta Mira, they will finally have a chance to be free from the debilitating effects of addiction.

While you can have an influence on your loved one’s decision to seek treatment, an individual struggling with alcoholism must take ultimate responsibility for their own recovery. Your support and encouragement may be what finally convinces them to seek help for their struggles with alcohol abuse. Your love and optimism can persuade them that change really is possible.

No matter how long your family member or close friend has been abusing alcohol, there is always hope. Treatment works for those who are motivated to get better, and for those whose loved ones are ready, willing, and eager to participate in the recovery process.

If you feel your loved one is in need of an intervention, our admissions team can work with you to help find the right interventionist to fit your family’s needs.

How Our Alcohol Treatment Center Transforms Lives

During your stay at Alta Mira, you’ll have an individualized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. This will include comprehensive services for any co-occurring conditions that might be complicating or supporting your alcohol addiction.

  • Comprehensive Neuropsychological Testing and Assessment
  • Individualized Treatment Plans
  • Evidence-Based Treatment Modalities
  • Holistic and Experiential Therapies

Our Transformational Alcoholism Treatment Program

Your first 30 days of treatment at Alta Mira is referred to as your Detox, Stabilization, Assessment period, which begins with private, medically supervised detox. During this time, our detox specialists will keep you safe and secure, monitored 24/7, as you rest in the privacy of your own room. You can also expect:

  • Weekly meetings with a psychiatrist
  • Weekly meetings with a medical doctor
  • Neuropsychological testing and advanced psychological testing
  • Orientation to our recovery fundamentals and self-regulation skills development
  • In-depth family engagement and the option for loved ones to attend multiple 3-day family programs
  • Introduction to therapy groups

Following 30 days of stabilization, clients move on to the next phase of their recovery process at Alta Mira, which we call our Transformational Program. Key elements of our complete 90-day transformational alcohol treatment program include:

  • Three individual intensive psychotherapy sessions per week
  • Weekly meetings with a medical doctor
  • Participation in advanced workshops to support introspection, foundational change toward recovery, and relapse prevention
  • Expanded neuropsychological assessment and continued weekly psychiatrist meetings inform tailored treatment adjustments and a refined individualized clinical approach
  • Practice and integration of recovery principles and self-regulation skills and continued family work to support improved individual outcomes
  • Intensive Workshops

Reclaim Your Life at Alta Mira

We believe individuals are best able to focus on their recovery when immersed in a secure, serene, healing setting. That’s why we provide comfortable surroundings while maintaining the most advanced luxury alcoholism treatment in Northern California. Clients can expect compassionate care from our best-in-class alcohol addiction specialists.

Seeking a helping hand to guide you through these difficult times is not an easy decision. Our caring and experienced team at Alta Mira can help guide you through the next steps toward achieving lasting recovery.

Don’t let alcoholism control your life. To begin your life-changing transformation, contact us today.

Alcoholism Treatment FAQs

The signs of alcoholism are numerous and common among most people who struggle with drinking, although there may be some individual differences. Experiencing just two of these can indicate a mild alcohol use disorder. The more symptoms present and the more severe they are, the more likely someone is to have a severe disorder. The stages of alcoholism can quickly lead someone from a mild problem to a real addictive disorder. Symptoms of alcoholism include:

  • Trying to drink less but failing
  • Being unable to control the amount of alcohol consumed
  • Consistently drinking more than planned
  • Spending a lot of time, energy, and money on getting more alcohol
  • Experiencing cravings when not drinking
  • Developing a tolerance, a need to drink more to get drunk
  • Drinking in spite of problems that it causes, like fights with family or legal problems
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms
  • Drinking in situations when it is clearly not safe to do so, such as before driving
  • Drinking even though it makes physical or mental health conditions worse
  • Limiting engagement in activities, hobbies, and social engagements to drink
  • Missing work or school or not completing responsibilities because of drinking or hangovers

Signs that someone is intoxicated include physical impairment, inappropriate behaviors, loss of inhibitions, unstable mood, slurred speech, impaired memory, difficulty paying attention, and impaired judgment.

Alcohol poisoning, or an overdose, may occur when blood alcohol levels rise to dangerous levels. Signs of alcohol poisoning include:

  • Extreme confusion
  • Vomiting
  • Slowed or irregular breathing
  • Low body temperature
  • A blue tint to the skin
  • Seizures
  • Loss of consciousness and unresponsiveness

Alcohol poisoning is very serious and should be treated as a medical emergency. It can quickly lead to death if not treated as soon as possible. If in doubt that someone is suffering from alcohol poisoning, always call 911 or get the person to the emergency room immediately.

One of the most characteristic signs of alcoholism is withdrawal. Anyone who experiences withdrawal when not drinking and drinks to avoid those unpleasant side effects is physically dependent on alcohol. Withdrawal from alcohol can be severe and dangerous. The possible symptoms include:

  • Anxiety
  • Tremors and shaking
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Excessive sweating
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • High blood pressure
  • Elevated heart rate

A severe reaction to withdrawing from alcohol is called delirium tremens. It causes confusion, severe vomiting, agitation, hallucinations, a fever, and convulsions or seizures. It should be treated as a medical emergency, and although not common delirium tremens is possible for anyone who has a severe alcohol use disorder.


Because withdrawal from alcohol can be so uncomfortable and even dangerous, it is best to detox with medical supervision. Treatment is best done in a residential alcohol addiction center beginning with supervised and sometimes medicated detox.

Most experts now agree that alcoholism is a disease, a chronic illness, and that it should be treated as such. It is not moral weakness on the part of the alcoholic, as some people still believe. This means that anyone can be treated. A commitment to residential alcohol treatment in a facility equipped to help someone with alcohol abuse can lead to overcoming alcoholism and lifetime management of the disease.