What Are the Benefits of Alcohol Recovery?

Living Without Alcohol Simply Feels Better

Coffee Cup and Spoon
Benefits of Recovery. © Getty Images

When you quit drinking after years of alcohol abuse, not only will your body begin to reverse the effects of the excess alcohol on your body, you will simply feel better. Research shows that some of the damage caused to your brain, liver and cardiovascular system by chronic alcohol abuse will begin to slowly heal.

When you first quit drinking, you will feel the temporary discomfort of withdrawal symptoms, but as the alcohol works its way out of your system you will begin to feel better, perhaps better than you have for years.

Robin's Alcohol Recovery Story

I'm healthier, happier, less self-involved, have much more motivation, wake up hangoverless, I've lost 5 pounds, and have gained a ton of insight.

I dream more, both figuratively and literally. I sleep better. I have an appetite again. My daily exercise workouts have gotten much, much better since I'm not dehydrated all the time. When I'm with people I care about, I'm really there.

Everything Has Changed

I feel a sense of freedom that I haven't felt in years. It is so good not to have to stop and pick up a 12-pack or to head out in crappy weather to do so. I'm being constructive again. I'm reading before bed instead of just passing out. I'm playing the guitar again. I've gotten my self-respect back.

I could go on and on, but will sum it up by saying that nearly everything has changed. And that, my friends, is a very good thing and well worth the slight discomfort I sometimes feel without that beer in hand.

-- Robin

You Can Feel Better Too

Like Robin, you too can turn your life around and feel better than you have in years. The withdrawal symptoms that you may experience when you first quit will last for only a brief period of time. Then you will gradually begin to feel better physically.

There are even medical treatments available that will lessen or eliminate the temporary withdrawal symptoms. If you want to quit drinking, there is a great deal of help and support available to you.

It Takes Effort to Stay Sober

But, major changes in your life do not take place just because you stop drinking. If all you do is quit drinking and nothing else, your health may improve, but you may not experience the benefits that Robin described above.

It also helps if you work at your recovery and new substance-free lifestyle. First, by not hanging out with the same people you did while you were using and making new friends.

Developing a New Lifestyle

It helps to also improve your diet and begin an exercise program, deal with past mistakes and clean up your financial situation. Learning how to deal with your anger and how not to substitute one addiction for another or some other compulsive behavior, is also important.

Developing an alcohol-free lifestyle and achieving long-term sobriety takes a lot more effort than merely not drinking anymore. Research shows that no matter what approach you used to get sober in the first place, you have a better chance of achieving lasting sobriety if you participate in a mutual support group also.

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