The Relation between Alcohol Addiction Counselling and Mental Health Reform

The Relation between Alcohol Addiction Counselling and Mental Health Reform

It is said that addiction is very closely related to the mental state of a person; more specifically their mental health. This is true, since the desire to consume a substance that alters the state of the mind, is borne out of a desire to rid oneself of the undesirable state of mind.

Why People Turn to Alcohol

Most people turn to alcohol in large quantities as an escape from the harsh realities of life. They find that the alcohol lets them go to a place where they are not afraid; a state of mind that allows them to meld freely into the world without worrying about drowning into their own thoughts and fears. The fact of the matter is that this way of thinking itself is a result of upset mental health, since the person turns to inanimate substances to escape.

Situations which may cause a person to become an alcoholic

Following are some of the situation that may force a person to become an alcoholic:

  • Continued unrest in their domestic lives, which leads to them seeking refuge elsewhere, where they are not nagged and ‘tormented’, and where their existence is not questioned in a negative manner.
  • Lack of professional accomplishment, which may lead to feelings of failure and frustration, and subsequently alcohol addiction.
  • An underlying fear of confrontation; be it with others or with one’s own demons. In any case, the person may be too afraid to face their own fears.

These situations, and more like them, all point to mental health issues, which all lead to the individual taking up alcohol as an escape measure.

How Alcohol Addiction Counseling is related to Mental Health Counseling

While the two may be for different purposes, the fact of the matter is that they are both interconnected, especially if the sufferer of the addiction is also a sufferer of mental illness. This is intensified if the person suffers from an addiction because they have a mental illness. In this case, the counselor has to tackle the root cause of the issue first, before they can get to the damaging act that results from the issue.

The counselor has to first determine why the person is taking up alcohol consumption. Here, the counselor, preferably a professional, also has to determine which type of mental illness is driving the person to seek refuge with alcohol.

It could be that the alcoholic has chronic depression, which they counter with alcohol. The individual may be suffering from crippling anxiety, which could very easily turn them towards alcohol consumption, since alcohol is known to remove all inhibitions. And, most disturbingly, the alcoholism could be due to Antisocial Personality Disorder, in which a person could resort to alcoholism to escape the feelings of aggression and frustration they experience.

In all of these situations, the counselor has to tackle the primary issue, which is the mental illness, after which the alcoholism can be targeted.

Since a large number of alcoholism cases are driven by mental illness, it is important to examine the alcohol addict for mental health issues, before they are recommended counseling, in order to make the latter more effective.

Category Health