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Recovery Process for Alcoholism One Day at a Time Depiction

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					                                                                                              Chapter 8

                                      Recovery Process for Alcoholism
                                                  One Day at a Time




                                                                                                                                 Chapter 8: Recovery Process
                                                                                                             One Day at a Time



                                                                                                                                                               Spotlight on Alcohol
                                                                                                                                       for Alcoholism
                            Depiction Suggestions
     The following points for consideration             since professionally facilitated interventions
regarding the portrayal of the recovery process         have a higher likelihood of success.
for alcohol use and addiction were developed            ◆  Characters who are students or young
as a resource for entertainment development             adults have the potential to role model inter-
and production. They are not meant to limit             vening when they see a classmate or friend
the creative process.                                   in trouble, rather than sitting back and watch-
                                                        ing for fear of getting that person in trouble
Intervention Process:                                   or alienating him.
◆ Intervention is a method of convincing a
person to seek treatment.                               Detoxification Process:
◆  Remember that for some, intervention has             ◆  Depending on the circumstances of your
to be a gradual process. Not everyone responds          story, detox can be an immediate, “cold
in the same way.                                        turkey” action (such as when a drinking
◆ When possible, show as many significant               alcoholic is convicted of a crime and sent
people in the alcoholic’s life as you can who           to prison) or a more gradual process using
are involved in the intervention process.               replacement therapies.
                                                        ◆ Try to show the character’s withdrawal
◆  Understand that intervention is only
successful when, by the time the intervention           symptoms during a detoxification. Many times
concludes, the alcoholic agrees that there              the process can result in temporary, related
is a problem. The intervention may still be             health problems.
successful for family and friends, however,             ◆  Be aware that there is a difference between
by providing a collective agreement that                detoxification and rehabilitation. Detoxifica-
they will no longer enable the alcoholic                tion is the process of safely getting alcohol
to continue drinking.                                   out of one’s system. Rehabilitation is the pro-
◆ If the intervention being portrayed is intend-        cess of being restored to a condition of good
ed to be successful, attempt to involve a treat-        health, the ability to work, and to reestablish
ment professional in the on-screen intervention,        the good reputation of one’s character or name.




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                                                                                                                                              8.1
                                                                         ◆ Bear in mind that many doctors have differ-
                                                                         ing opinions about detoxification. A detox for
                                                                         alcoholism is likely to be different from one
                                                                         for other drugs.

                                                                         Treatment Process:
                                                                         ◆ Remember that both in-patient and out-
                                                                         patient treatments are frequently expensive
                                                                         and/or often not covered or are only partially
                                                                         covered by insurance. Twelve-step programs
                       Chapter 8: Recovery Process




                                                                         such as Alcoholics Anonymous have proven
                                                                         to be an effective no-cost alternative in the
                                                     One Day at a Time
Spotlight on Alcohol




                                                                         recovery process, although they are not nec-
                             for Alcoholism




                                                                         essarily effective for everyone.
                                                                         ◆ Consider that many treatment centers give
                                                                         the patient the option of in-patient or out-
                                                                         patient services.
                                                                         ◆  When seeking treatment, many people do
                                                                         not feel comfortable discussing such matters
                                                                         publicly because of the negative stigmas they
                                                                         may encounter. Therefore, consider the poten-
                                                                         tial for negative reactions that a character may
                                                                         experience when exploring treatment options.
                                                                         ◆  When possible, try to avoid showing recov-
                                                                         ering characters hanging out in places where
                                                                         alcohol use is a large part of what happens
                                                                         there or with people who are actively drinking
                                                                         alcohol, unless your intent is to pose tempta-
                                                                         tion for the character or foreshadow or lead
                                                                         toward eventual relapse.




                                                                                                              Spotlight on Depiction of Health and Social Issues
                                                                                                                                        Proprietary To:
                                                                                                                         Entertainment Industries Council, Inc.
                                                                                                                                  www.eiconline.org
                                                                              1760 Reston Parkway, Ste. 415 • Reston, VA 20190-3303                500 S. Buena Vista St • Burbank, CA 91521-7283
                                                                                 Telephone: (703) 481-1414 • Fax: (703) 481-1418                  Telephone: (818) 955-6845 • Fax: (818) 955-6870




                                                                         S P O T L I G H T        O N     D E P I C T I O N           O F       H E A L T H      A N D       S O C I A L        I S S U E S


                       8.2
                                       Recovery Process for Alcoholism




                                                                                                                                                             Chapter 8: Recovery Process
                                                                                                                                         One Day at a Time



                                                                                                                                                                                           Spotlight on Alcohol
                                                                                                                                                                   for Alcoholism
                                        Fact Sheet
Treatment Process:                                      recognized as an effective mutual help pro-
◆  While alcoholism is a treatable disease, a           gram for recovering alcoholics, not everyone
cure is not yet available. That means that even         responds to AA’s style and message, and other
if an alcoholic has been sober for a long time          recovery approaches are available.
and has regained health, he or she remains              ◆  Almost 85 percent of people who are in
susceptible to relapse and must continue to             recovery for alcoholism smoke, compared
avoid all alcoholic beverages. Cutting down             with 25 percent of the general public.
on drinking does not work; cutting out alcohol          ◆ Anecdotal evidence suggests that acupuncture
is necessary for a successful recovery.1                can decrease cravings for drugs and alcohol,
◆  The goals of alcoholism treatment include            reduce withdrawal symptoms, relieve tension,
reduction in the use and effects of substances          and help people relax.
or achievement of abstinence, reduction in the          ◆  Even individuals who are determined to
frequency and severity of relapse, and improve-         stay sober may suffer one or several relapses
ment in psychological and social functioning.2          before achieving long-term sobriety. Relapses
◆ Several medications may help improve treat-           are very common and do not mean that a
ment of alcoholic patients. The prescription            person has failed or cannot eventually
drug Naltrexone, when used in combination               recover from alcoholism.
with counseling, has been shown to lessen               ◆  Every day that a recovering alcoholic has
the craving for alcohol in many people and              stayed sober before a relapse is extremely
help prevent a return to heavy drinking.3               valuable time, both to the individual and to
◆  For nearly fifty years, a medication called          his or her family. If a relapse occurs, it is very
disulfiram or Antabuse has been used to treat           important to try to stop drinking once again
alcohol dependence. Disulfiram acts as a psy-           and to get whatever additional support is
chological deterrent to alcohol intake by               needed to abstain from drinking.4
producing unpleasant symptoms whenever
alcohol is consumed.                                    Sources:
                                                           1. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism,
◆  Virtually all alcoholism treatment programs          www.niaaa.nih.gov, Frequently Asked Questions on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism,
include meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous                January 1998.
                                                           2. American Psychiatric Association, www.psych.org, Substance Abuse,
(AA), which describes itself as a “worldwide            January 1996.
fellowship of men and women who help each                  3-4. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, www.
other to stay sober.” While AA is generally             niaaa.nih.gov, Frequently Asked Questions on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism,
                                                        January 1998.




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                                                                                                                                                                          8.3
                                           Spotlight on Depiction of Health and Social Issues
                                                                     Proprietary To:
                                                      Entertainment Industries Council, Inc.
                                                               www.eiconline.org
           1760 Reston Parkway, Ste. 415 • Reston, VA 20190-3303                500 S. Buena Vista St • Burbank, CA 91521-7283
              Telephone: (703) 481-1414 • Fax: (703) 481-1418                  Telephone: (818) 955-6845 • Fax: (818) 955-6870




      S P O T L I G H T        O N      D E P I C T I O N          O F       H E A L T H      A N D       S O C I A L        I S S U E S


8.4

				
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