Worrying about a loved one when they’re suffering from the weight of addiction is incredibly difficult; we understand that it takes courage and practicality to know how to get an alcoholic into rehab – which is why we’re here to help you navigate this struggle.

Find out here the steps to getting somebody suffering from alcohol addiction into rehab and how to tackle addiction as a bystander.

Recognising the Signs of Addiction

Everyone can be affected differently by alcohol depending on their body type, age, weight, build and metabolism, so it can be challenging to know when somebody is addicted. However, making yourself aware of the kinds of symptoms that are present during an alcohol addiction can make it easier to spot.

While some people may openly admit to having an addiction to alcohol, others may be more secretive and try to conceal the effects of their excessive drinking on their behaviour and relationships with others.

This is completely understandable; they may feel ashamed or embarrassed, but you’re there to comfort them and to help them understand that getting help is the best thing for them with no judgment.

That being said, getting to the bottom of the addiction begins with knowing the signs, some of these can include but aren’t limited to:

Physical Symptoms

  • Frequent hangovers
  • Withdrawal symptoms (e.g., shaking, sweating, nausea)
  • Tolerance: Needing increasing amounts of alcohol to feel its effects
  • Physical signs: Flushed skin or broken capillaries on the face
  • Loss of appetite
  • Blackouts or memory lapses
  • Red eyes or swollen face

Behavioural Symptoms

  • Drinking in larger amounts or over a longer period than intended
  • Unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control alcohol use
  • Spending a lot of time obtaining, using, or recovering from the effects of alcohol
  • Skipping or neglecting personal or professional responsibilities because of drinking
  • Giving up or reducing important social, occupational, or recreational activities because of alcohol use
  • Using alcohol in situations where it’s physically hazardous

Psychological Symptoms

  • A strong desire or urge to use alcohol
  • Continued alcohol use despite awareness of causing or exacerbating a physical or psychological problem
  • Feeling a need to drink to relax, feel better, or function normally
  • Denial of the problem or minimising the amount consumed
  • Anxiety, depression, or other mental health disorders

Social Symptoms

  • Relationship problems caused or exacerbated by drinking
  • Becoming isolated from family and friends
  • Being secretive about drinking habits or hiding alcohol
  • Legal problems related to alcohol use, such as DUIs
  • Engaging in risky behaviours while intoxicated

Neglecting Personal Care

  • Neglect of personal appearance or hygiene
  • Not eating or eating poorly

Dependence Indicators

  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when not drinking
  • Consuming alcohol to prevent or relieve withdrawal symptoms

If you notice one or more of the symptoms in your loved one regularly, it may be time to speak up.

If they respond positively when you suggest it, you can begin the process of researching what to expect from a rehab programme and potential costs.

Suppose the person responds negatively or in a hostile manner. In that case, hiring an interventionist who can help persuade your loved one to enter a controlled rehab facility may be worthwhile.

How to Choose an Alcohol Rehab Facility

It is important to thoroughly research different types of rehab facilities to determine how they can help your loved one.

You may decide to have treatment at home or to choose a rehab facility with accommodation and round-the-clock care – whatever you choose; there are some things to consider before finalising your decision and beginning the process of coaxing your loved one into rehab.

Some aspects you should research before you make a decision include:

  • Costs
  • Experience
  • Staff
  • In-patient or out-patient
  • CQC Report
  • Treatment options
  • Reviews
  • Aftercare programmes
  • Duration of stay available

Rehab can be expensive, and the length of stay can vary from person to person, so make sure to discuss your budget with the rehab centre to find ways they can work with you to meet your needs.

You can also get insurance policies that enable you to pay for treatment. Many rehab facilities can make bespoke treatment programmes that are tailored for the patient and their financial arrangements.

Guests at a rehab should be encouraged to have positive outlooks towards their treatments and treat all patients holistically, so they participate in health and fitness activities such as gym work, yoga, Tai Chi and meditation to heal both body and mind.

How to Convince an Alcoholic to Get Treatment

Once you have done your research and have decided on a space you think will be suitable for your loved one, it is time to help them agree to treatment.

This is a fickle situation and requires care and caution since everybody can react differently.

The last thing you want is for them to feel attacked in an instance that is already weighing them down. So, being pragmatic and empathetic, understanding how they may feel and knowing how they’re feeling is vital to approach with caution.

Ultimately, the first step is understanding how they’re feeling.

Your perception of how they’re handling their addiction could be very different to what they are actually experiencing. Thus, it is important to get to the bottom of how they’re coping, what (if any) steps have been taken to combat the alcoholism so far and if they even want to quit alcohol at all.

Once you have answered these questions and concluded, the second step is to start talking about the prospect of rehab centres and how this can impact their recovery.

Of course, rehab can be incredibly daunting, so you should present them with the benefits of rehab and potential centres they could go to you can also talk about how severe their alcoholism may be and how long you suspect they may require in rehab.

If you’re unsure, you can speak to professionals about navigating this situation. You can speak to us at Ocean Recovery, and we will gladly help you with conducting an intervention for your loved one and can give you some assistance on how to get an alcoholic into rehab.

The final step is to begin the process of getting them into rehab and accepting help. This transition will likely be the most difficult, yet still the most beneficial for their future, so approaching this can be challenging.

You can do this by putting them in touch with a rehab centre directly, like us. Or, you can use a referral like Action Rehab or Addiction Advocates which can offer a range of options and advice for those suffering from alcoholism.

Help for Loved Ones of Those Suffering from Alcoholism

Alcoholism doesn’t just affect the person abusing alcohol – it also affects their family and friends.

Suppose you approached the subject of admitting an alcoholic into rehab and they have responded negatively. In that case, it is important to speak to a counsellor about your feelings and how this situation affects you, as well as the affected person.

You can always speak to us here at Ocean Recovery or contact a designated charity for family, carers and friends of those suffering from addiction, like Adfam.

It is a daunting task, and there is no streamlined or ‘right’ way of knowing how to get an alcoholic into rehab, so don’t feel discouraged if it takes some time to finalise plans.

Planning An Intervention To Get An Alcoholic Into Rehab

Planning an intervention can be difficult. You need to be sympathetic to the patients’ needs but also firm enough to insist that they focus on their alcohol abuse and seek help through rehab.

Intervention can be very successful, especially if a rehab centre is arranged for the alcoholic to go straight to after intervention. You should seek a professional interventionist with experience in handling reactions to an intervention.

Also, try and get close family and friends to attend the intervention, as this places more significant stress on the importance of the intended patient attending rehab. It will also be an opportunity for loved ones to clearly explain to the affected person how their addiction is taking a toll on others’ lives through their addiction-fuelled actions and behaviour. This process is about getting the alcoholic to see how their actions affect others, not to attribute blame.

If you are worried about what to say or how you might conduct yourself in an intervention, speak to the interventionist, who can help you prepare notes or a speech to the alcoholic that will get your feelings across in a measured and calm way.

Get Help Today

When you organise an intervention, it is essential to give your loved one who is facing rehab as much emotional support as possible, as this will aid in their recovery.

Remind them that you fully support their journey to sobriety and that you are there for them. Rehab can be a very challenging and daunting time, and you need to ensure that your loved one will take the recovery process seriously and follow the advice given by rehab staff.

Talk to the rehab centre you choose about aftercare and how you can support your loved one when they leave rehab so that together, you can prevent relapse. There are also organisations you can join that can give ongoing support and support groups with weekly meetings.

If you need help to get an alcoholic into rehab, talk to us at Ocean Recovery today. Our unique and calming location helps you to feel relaxed and pampered while carrying out your treatment, with round-the-clock understanding and support from our professional team.

Call us today on 0800 880 7596 or email us at info@oceanrecoverycentre.com for assistance in getting your loved one the help they need and deserve.

John Gillen - Author - Last updated: October 17, 2023

John is one UK’s leading professionals in the addiction recovery industry. Pioneering new treatment techniques such as NAD+ and ongoing research into new therapy techniques such as systematic laser therapy, John is committed to providing the very best treatment for people throughout the UK and Europe. During his extremely busy schedule, John likes to regularly update our blog section with the latest news and trends in the industry to keep visitors to our site as well informed as possible on everything related to addiction treatment.