If you have recently completed a programme of rehabilitation, you may be worried about getting back to the real world and the various temptations you will face on a daily basis. There is nothing you can do about many of the temptations out there; however, is there anything you can do to ensure you are not facing these temptations in your home? If you have been suffering from alcohol addiction for many years, then you will no doubt want to make sure that there is no alcohol in your home to tempt you.
Getting rid of alcohol is a wise move especially in the early days when your resolve may not be as strong. You are bound to experience cravings at some point, so the last thing you need when this happens is to have alcohol within easy reach. If you have to leave the house to get your hands on alcohol when you get cravings, there is a greater chance that the time and effort required will disrupt the craving and give you the opportunity to change your mind.
Although you may not have had an addiction to drugs or prescription medications, it may be a good idea to get rid of any mood-altering medication from your home. Drugs such as stimulants, anti-depressants, painkillers, and tranquilisers may be something you will reach for if you get cravings and cannot get your hands on alcohol.
If these medications belong to another member of the family, ask if they can store these away from easy reach. It may be that they will store them at work and just keep a small amount in the home. This way, the individual concerned will quickly realise if any has gone missing. If it is not possible to store these medications out of the home, they should be placed in a locked cabinet to which you do not have the key.
What about Food?
Many people forget that alcohol is not only found in bottles or cans. It is also contained in many foods and, despite popular opinion to the contrary, the alcohol in food can cause you problems. Just a small amount of alcohol could be enough to trigger a relapse – there is just no way to know how much of the substance could cause you to want more. It really is best to take steps to avoid alcohol altogether and ensure that your food is never prepared in, or contains, alcohol such as spirits or wine.
Not only should you refrain from using alcohol in your home for cooking, if you are invited to a friend or family member’s house for a meal, ask that they do not use alcohol in the preparation of any food for you. At a restaurant, you can also ask for your food to be alcohol-free. If you do not want to tell the waiter that you are a recovering alcoholic, you can tell him or her that you are allergic to alcohol, and you simply cannot have it. That way, they will be more likely to ensure your request is adhered to.
Look out for other foods in which alcohol may be hidden, including desserts, extracts, flavourings, wine vinegar, liquid sweeteners, and dressings. You may also be surprised to know that many non-alcoholic beverages still contain a small amount of alcohol – non-alcoholic drinks often do not contain zero per cent alcohol. They must contain less than 0.5 per cent and while this does not sound a lot, it can be enough to trigger cravings in some individuals. For others, the process of drinking even a non-alcoholic beverage such as beer or wine can be enough to make them want to drink again.