Making A Self-Assessment
Alcoholism is a progressive disease, meaning the symptoms of alcoholism develop and progress over time. If the symptoms of alcohol abuse always stayed the same, you would never need help, and The Sinclair Method wouldn’t exist.
Sadly, as you already know, this is not the case.
As with all things in life, alcohol abuse and excessive drinking come at a price. That price is your health, your state of mind, and your wellbeing.
We can say with certainty that alcoholism is a progressive disease because it has well-documented stages.
Spirals invariably head downwards, and this is where alcohol abuse takes you. How far you go down the spiral depends on the action you take. Intervention at an early-stage can nip the problem in the bud before it develops.
The biggest issue with alcohol abuse is the inability to recognise when it becomes a problem. We often see people drink first thing in the morning until they go to bed at night. This unhealthy behaviour is not normal.
When you start looking for opportunities to drink, or you turn to drink to ease your anxieties, worries or thoughts, alcohol has become a problem. The challenge once you recognise the problem is to do something about it.
There are several ways to treat alcohol use disorder. The Sinclair Method takes a radically different approach to conventional methods — it requires you to carry on drinking as normal with no abstinence allowed.
Here’s how it works in a nutshell – The Sinclair Method is a form of pharmacological extinction, a studied and proven therapy that involves un-learning the brain’s associated dependence with alcohol.
This works by you taking an opiate blocker before your first drink of the day. Over several months, this turns your habit-forming behaviour into habit-erasing behaviour. You want to drink less because there is no pleasure in it.
The Sinclair Method is often referred to as “the cure” because it takes the radical view that addiction is a disease that can be cured. This is different from conventional therapies, which believe that addiction can only be controlled and managed.
Do you need to undergo The Sinclair Method to stop drinking? That depends on your circumstances. First of all, you should establish what stage you are at with your drinking. A self-assessment can be helpful to determine this.
The Sinclair Method takes the radical view that alcohol addiction is a disease that can be cured by changing your body’s behaviour/reward cycle. You can find out if it’s a suitable treatment for you by calling our experts on 0333 444 0315. We offer fast assessments and you can start your treatment in under 48 hours.
Early Stage Drinking
You are looking for opportunities to drink. You might grab a beer instead of a Cola from the fridge; you might pop into a pub or bar when you’re out shopping; you might start drinking at the airport before you jet off on holiday.
At this stage, you find comfort and pleasure when you drink. You look forward to a drink and you actively seek out that comfort and pleasure.
To try and justify your behaviour, you might drink with friends.
Over a short time, you start buying more alcohol. You switch over to stronger alcoholic drinks and you start drinking earlier on in the day.
You find yourself wanting to grab an alcoholic drink. The sensation of wanting it is nagging at you. When you finally get a drink, you find great satisfaction in it.
Without knowing it, you are creating dangerous habit-forming behaviour. Your brain is starting to associate alcohol with pleasure.
A few weeks pass and you are now drinking more heavily than ever. You don’t recognise your drinking as a problem. Your brief attempts not to drink – and your ability to stop for a short while – has made you think you could stop whenever you like.
However, you never stop. You keep drinking.
Before you know it, your drinking has spiralled out of control.
You have lost control of alcohol when it starts to consume your life.
Here are some common symptoms:
- The first thing you think about when you wake up is alcohol
- You can go no longer than a few hours without a drink
- You can’t resist the opportunity to drink
- You start associating yourself with other heavy drinkers
- People have started to notice you’re not sober
- You have missed important dates and schedules
- You are making yourself unavailable so you can drink instead
- You put alcohol and drinking before your family and friends
- You put alcohol and drinking before your job, career and livelihood
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms now, now is the time to seek help for your alcohol abuse.
As we previously talked about, alcoholism is a progressive disease, meaning the symptoms of alcoholism develop and progress over time.
If you have one of the symptoms above, then over time you will experience more, and eventually, alcohol will consume your whole life. This could not only destroy your health, but it could also destroy your family and livelihood.
Is the Cure Right For Me?
If you associate yourself with any of the symptoms we talked about, The Sinclair Method could help get your drinking under control.
If alcohol controls your life, or you are seeking out opportunities to drink, or you can only satisfy a craving by drinking, TCM offers you a way to resolve your compulsive drinking. It’s suitable for early-stage and later-stage alcoholism.
The methodology behind The Sinclair Method is grounded in mainstream science and more clinics are starting to use it to treat compulsive drinking.
Your Mental Health
The Sinclair Method requires you to undergo no therapy, however, it can be used in conjunction with therapy if you would benefit from it.
For example, you might benefit from Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or Dialectal Behaviour Therapy to help with anxiety, depression or OCD. You might benefit from interpersonal psychotherapy if you have a mood disorder.
Research has shown that The Sinclair Method can decrease depression in people with a drinking problem. This happens in line with a decrease in the volume of drinking, helping the patient get their life under control.
The Sinclair Method does not restrict you from therapy, but it doesn’t incorporate therapy either. This would be a separate enterprise.
The Sinclair Method works by you taking an opiate blocker (Naltrexone or Nalmefene) before your first drink of the day. The opiate blocker disrupts your body’s behaviour/reward cycle which is driven by endorphins.
So, even though you drink and satisfy your cravings, with The Sinclair Method your brain begins to disassociate alcohol with pleasure over time. The extinction of habit-forming behaviour is the goal of The Sinclair Method.
The Cure Never Judges You
One of the worst things about having a drinking problem is the taboo of excessive drinking, which can put people off getting the help they need.
The Sinclair Method takes a non-judgemental approach to addiction. It does not discriminate, nor does it make drinking a shameful act.
With The Sinclair Method, you must continue to drink for the treatment to work. By continuing your habit-forming behaviour without an endorphin release, you disrupt your body’s behaviour/reward cycle, and your habit-forming behaviour becomes a habit-erasing behaviour. The science is completely sound.
If you have been called an “alcoholic” or you have been told you have a “drinking problem”, there is no shame in this. Alcoholism is a disease that can affect anyone. No one is immune to addiction, no matter the form it takes.
When you are on The Sinclair Method, your drinking will be brought under control over 3 to 4 months. The process is safe and withdrawal symptom-free. The effect is that you will start to want to drink less. Your urge to drink will reduce.
Eventually, it will dissipate completely, and your problem will be cured.
Questions To Ask Yourself
Before embarking on any treatment, ask yourself these 8 questions:
- Do you have a blood relative who is an alcoholic?
- Have you ever been told you have a drinking problem?
- Do you look for opportunities to drink?
- Do you grab a drink given any opportunity?
- Do you sneak alcohol into normal drinks like coffee?
- Do you hide alcohol around the house?
- Do you turn up to social occasions drunk?
- Do you turn up to work and meetings drunk?
If you answered yes to question 1, research tells us that those who have an alcoholic parent are more likely to be alcoholics in the future.
If you answered yes to any of the questions 2 to 4, you may have a problem with excessive drinking, but it may not be an addiction yet. The Sinclair Method could provide intervention at this stage to stop your compulsive drinking from becoming an addiction.
If you answered yes to questions 5 to 8, you are likely addicted to alcohol. The Sinclair Method will help you bring your addiction under control, and in time, it could cure you of alcohol dependence altogether.
In part 3 of our guide, we will cover your prescription for Naltrexone or Nalmefene and what to expect from the medication.
To find out more about The Sinclair Method and whether it’s suitable for you, call our experts on 0333 444 0315 for free, personalised advice. We offer fast assessments and you can start your treatment in under 48 hours.