The numbers show that there are more alcohol related deaths in Wales every year than in England. Just in 2012 alone, there were 500 deaths. Recent numbers suggest the problem is not getting any better either. So leaders in Wales are aggressively looking for new ways to stem alcohol abuse before things get any worse.

As far as the raw numbers are concerned, it does not look good. Numbers from the Welsh National Database for Substance Abuse show that there were 9,127 substance abuse referrals for the first quarter of 2014, up more than 1,800 from the same period in 2013. Between October and December 2013, a little more than 8,400 were referred for substance abuse services. Alcohol addiction is still on the rise, according to these statistics.

Officials say most of the referrals are related to alcohol abuse. What they are not prepared to say is why the numbers keep going up from quarter to quarter. One suggestion is that treatment programmes are successful enough to encourage people to finally admit they have a problem. Others say the rising numbers are further proof that more people are beginning to drink every day. Regardless of who is right or wrong, there is some good news.

The Welsh Government reports that everyone involved is doing a better job at making sure rehab services are being taken advantage of. Approximately 91% of all those referred complete treatments within 21 days of the referral, up some 2% over last year. The statistics clearly show that substance abusers in Wales are not being put on extended waiting lists for weeks or months at a time.

Looking to the Future

Officials in Wales know that substance abuse harms both individual users and society as a whole. They are looking for new ways to stem alcohol abuse in order to minimise personal and societal impact. According to one official, Shadow Minister for Communities Mark Isherwood, the Government needs to do a better job of providing early intervention and supporting private residential rehab efforts. He was recently quoted by Wales Online as saying:

“The Welsh Government needs to move substance misuse off the streets and out of people’s lives, working far better with providers and the voluntary and independent sectors to make such support available and investing in the abstinence-based residential rehabs that result in clients achieving sobriety and the chance of a new life.”

We could not agree more where residential rehab is concerned. The residential model has proven more successful than anything else we have tried over the years. While it is not perfect, residential rehab does offer the most concentrated care and the best environment for abstinence-based recovery.

What It Entails

Residential rehab is strikingly different from outpatient rehab in a number of ways. First, it involves the recovering addict living in the rehab facility for a period of 4 to 12 weeks. During that time, he or she undergoes medically supervised detox and a number of rehabilitative therapies provided by trained clinicians. The idea is to treat the entire person rather than just the physical aspects of addiction.

Second, residential rehab takes advantage of the group dynamic. By providing group counselling and support, recovering addicts can motivate one another, learn from one another, and hold one another accountable. To that end, many residential facilities incorporate 12-step work into their rehabilitative programmes.

Residential rehab might be a good option for you if you are struggling with substance abuse of any kind. At Addiction Helper, we can help you try to figure it out. When you call our 24-hour recovery helpline, you will be connected with an experienced counsellor who can assess your situation, offer advice, and provide treatment referrals.

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