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Senior Alcoholism Interventions
and How it works
Alcoholism among senior citizens often is overlooked mainly because it is difficult to admit that strong parent who raised us is struggling with a disease they seem powerless to control. However, the truth is that alcoholism among the elderly is not as uncommon as one might think. The truth is that there may be a number of reasons why people turn to alcohol, as they get older.
The Increasing Risk of Alcoholism for Seniors
As people get older their lives begin to change in a number of different ways and some people have a difficult time coping with these changes and may turn to alcohol in order to numb the feelings that come with these life changes. Some of the changes that could leave seniors struggling to cope may include:
- Loss of purpose– Although many people look forward to retirement, once retired some older people find themselves struggling to find some new purpose in their life. This feeling of loss of purpose can leave a person feeling useless as though nothing they do matters.
- Loss of Income- Many of the elderly find that the loss of income that comes with not working can be difficult to deal with. Social Security and 401Ks often don’t cover the growing needs of people this age, and they may turn to drink rather than visit their problems on their family and loved ones.
- Loss of Loved Ones- Senior citizens have likely suffered significant loss of a spouse, loved ones or friends and turn to alcohol as a way to numb the pain of that loss.
- Loneliness- Many senior citizens live alone and with younger family working and having lives of their own, many senior citizens suffer from loneliness and deal with those feeling by drinking to make time pass more quickly.
Staging an Intervention For That Beloved Senior
Studies show that seniors respond well too less formal interventions than do younger people. However, there are still some things you need to do in order for that intervention to be successful. While you should get the advice of an expert, here are a few tips that may help.
Choose the Right Time To Approach Your Loved One
You should never approach that senior when they are drinking, as they will not be able to think rationally. Instead choose a time to approach them when they are sober, but feeling the effects of their disease such as when they are hung over, or when they have suffered an accident due to their drinking.
Show The Love and Respect You Feel
When talking to your loved one shows them respect. Talk to them don’t lecture them. Make sure that you get their participation during the discussion by asking them questions regarding their goals, their wants and needs and asking them how their drinking affects them reaching their goals, or getting their needs met. Help them reach the conclusion, that their life would be better with drinking. Whatever, you do don’t talk down to them and don’t put labels on their behavior since this will put them on the defensive and they will quit listening to anything you have to say.
Express Your Concerns In a Loving Way
When you show genuine concern for someone you love they can feel your concern and will be apt to take those concerns seriously. Express in a non-dramatic way that their drinking affects you and you ability to enjoy time with them.
Make Sure they Understand That Treatment is An Option
Make sure that your loved one knows that treatment is an option and that there are treatment facilities that can deal with any special needs that your loved one may have whether they have special medical needs or some other need. Assure them that you are willing to participate in their treatment in any way that is needed.
By showing your loved one that you care and are concerned about their well being, you may be able to reach them and get them to agree to the treatment that will help them to deal with their disease.