New App May Aid Alcoholics in Recovery

Making That First Call

“Risky” drinking is defined by three or four alcoholic beverages consumed within a two-hour period. “Binge drinking” is four or five drinks in the same amount of time. Both can be hazardous to the drinker’s health, contributing to both acute and chronic medical issues.

Unfortunately, both are extremely common in American society. Many who function at a job or at school during the week routinely overindulge in alcohol in the evenings or on the weekend. The problem for many drinkers is that they are not fully aware of how much they are drinking or the amount of time that’s passed as it’s happening.

A new smartphone app was designed to help people raise their awareness of their alcohol intake. According to Reuters, this app was also shown to be effective in helping those in recovery to completely abstain from alcohol.

How Does the App Work?

There are multiple functions in the app that can assist someone in recognizing risks to their recovery. For example, the app offers guided relaxation techniques – a useful tool given that stress and stressors are often significant contributors to relapse. Also, it alerts the user when they are near a bar or another place that could be a threat to their recovery. There is also a “panic button” that the user can press when they need to connect with those who support them in their recovery or other users of the app, and there are games that they can play when they need to be distracted from the impulse to drink or get high.

Why Is This Useful?

Recovery is tough. A reported 25 percent of alcohol abusers manage to avoid drinking in their first year of recovery, according to the study published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. An app like the one described in the study is one of many things that can be beneficial in helping someone in recovery beat those odds and learn how to live a life without substance abuse. Other things that can aid in a person’s ability to remain relapse-free include:

  • A strong start in a personalized, comprehensive drug rehab program that utilizes evidence-based treatments and therapies
  • Extensive aftercare services personalized to the needs of the patient
  • A strong social support system
  • Ongoing care for co-occurring mental health disorders
  • Options for constructive assistance for other issues barring the way to recovery (e.g., legal assistance, job skills training, parenting classes, couples counseling, etc.)

What does your loved one need to stop drinking or using drugs? Contact us at Axis now to discuss the options available in treatment.