5 Things To Look For In A Rehabilitation Center: A Guide For An Alcoholic’s Loved Ones

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Rehabilitation from alcoholism starts with deciding that the problem is very real. People who have loved ones suffering from the condition know that convincing an alcoholic to undergo treatment can be quite challenging, especially during the denial phase.

Addiction rehabilitation specialist Dr. Maher Soudah and his team at Kaiser Wellness Center understand this well enough and strongly recommend that family members and friends of an alcoholic to carefully choose a rehabilitation center that would suit their specific circumstances.

Choosing the right rehabilitation center is imperative for the alcoholic to have the best possible care and treatment. Finding a specific program that works well for the individual makes recovery faster and more permanent. On top of that, giving the alcoholic the choice of a rehabilitation center makes them feel a lot more in control and less like a victim because doing so will make him feel that they own their destiny.

With these in mind, Dr. Soudah and his team of experts at Kaiser Wellness Center identified 5 important things to consider when choosing a rehabilitation center an alcoholic.


The place where the rehabilitation center is located is an important factor to consider when choosing a facility for your loved one as it determines whether he or she would be able to cope with the treatment easily. For some people, staying at a facility near their usual residence would be easier, especially if they consider their loved ones as their source of strength and motivation. However, there are those who may recover better if they are in a rehabilitation center that is far from their usual stomping grounds, so to speak.

Available Treatment Programs

The availability of different treatment programs should also be considered when choosing a rehabilitation center since it is the core of the decision your loved one must make to turn his or her life around. Some rehab centers offer a wide variety of courses, including spirituality-based ones, while others focus on science-backed treatments like cognitive behavioral therapy. Go to a facility that offers a program that suits your loved one’s needs, else you risk making rehabilitation a lot harder for him than it should be.

Co-Ed Vs. Single-Gender Facilities

Having the opposite sex around during treatment is also a factor that can make or break your loved one’s recovery as some alcoholics and experts monitoring their behavior that it can directly affect the way the patients react to treatment. At one point, some even came across problems in their treatment because of the attraction the alcoholics face to the opposite sex.

Length Of Stay

While studies have shown that adequate stay inside a rehabilitation facility, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the period would be the same for everyone. In fact, experts at the Kaiser Wellness Center explained that the duration of an alcoholic’s stay varies, depending on the person’s specific circumstances which will be assessed by addiction rehabilitation specialists like Maher Soudah.


Accreditation of the facility is also an important thing to look for when choosing a rehabilitation center for your loved one as it would show if the place is following standard protocols set by the government. This is because accrediting bodies only hand out such credentials to facilities that have proven their quality of service as well as the efficacy of their available programs, facilities, and employees. Seeing a rehab center’s accreditation is also be a good way to determine the recovery success of those who have substance abuse problems previously treated for in the facility.

After taking all these factors into consideration, it is also wise to seek reviews from experts as well as recovered alcoholics on the potential rehabilitation centers that may handle your loved one’s well-being.

How To Talk To An Alcoholic: 7 Tips

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Communication is the key to having a fruitful relationship, but it can be challenging if the other party is an alcoholic. People whose significant others have an alcohol abuse problem know for a fact that getting a message across can be quite tricky since it can be distorted and turned into an argument.

Because of this, Dr. Maher Soudah, who specializes in addiction rehabilitation, have made it a point to explain how to properly talk to an alcoholic, especially if that person is a loved one. As the director Kaiser Wellness Center, Dr. Soudah and his team acknowledge that communicating your thoughts about your loved one’s addiction to the liquor is important, but he also explained that it can be said in a way that won’t result to a shouting match.

1. Stay calm and composed.

BETHESDA, Md. (Dec. 5, 2011)  
Therapy dogs Lt. Cmdr. Bobbie, Rear Adm. Laura Lee and Marine Sgt. Archie pose for a photo with Army Pfc. Derek McConnell and his fiancee, Krystina Dressler, and his mother, Siobhan McConnell, in McConnell’s hospital room at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The dogs visit daily with wounded warriors and their families and help with physical therapy. (U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Peggy Trujillo/Released)

Keeping your calm is imperative when talking to an alcoholic as it would determine how he would react to your statements. Learn to speak in a tone that won’t cause him to feel attacked. This means you should avoid shouting or yelling. Experts also recommend avoiding getting emotional and crying while having this talk as it would only make matters worse. Remember: an alcoholic will try to push your buttons which can trigger strong emotions so be prepared.

2. Speak to the alcoholic when he is sober.

The best time to speak your mind is when your alcoholic loved one is sober since an honest and amicable communication while he is under the influence is almost impossible. This can be right after he woke up as it is usually the time when the alcohol has been flushed out of his system.

3. Extend your patience.

Aside from staying composed, being patient is also a key to successful communication with an alcoholic. While you may be able to control your emotions, your partner may not so it is best to ride the high horse and extend your patience even though he may have outbursts of anger. If you feel that the situation is going nowhere, end the conversation and try another time.

1. Trying to empathize with an alcoholic can be difficult but you should try anyway. This is because understanding where the other person is coming from would make it easier to speak to him calmly and patiently when compared to when you’re talking while with feelings of hurt and despair.

4. Remain honest throughout the conversation.

Staying honest throughout the conversation doesn’t necessarily mean you have to point fingers. What you need to be honest about is how you feel about an alcoholic’s condition and how it has affected your relationship. It is also good to say when you are starting to feel like you need to walk out on him but make sure he or she knows that the is alcohol to blame and not himself.

5. Be an active listener. 

Communication is a two-way process so make sure to be an active listener while speaking to an alcoholic. Not interrupting when the other person is talking will make him feel respected. Through this, he would know that you are there, listening and caring for him as well.


Hold off intervention-like statements.

Be careful about what you say as statements that seem like you are intervening or lecturing might cause an alcoholic to erupt. Timing your statements well is also advisable when speaking to an alcoholic as it would help avoid unnecessary arguments. Some may find speaking to alcoholics about the consequences of their condition after they experience negative consequences like losing their job, a DUI arrest, and divorce would help them understand that liquor is to blame for their suffering.

Alcoholism And Alcohol Consumption: How Much Is Too Much?

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Alcoholism is a condition characterized by a dependence on alcohol. It is a chronic medical disorder that is caused by continuous consumption of large amounts of liquor. But when exactly can one say that he or she is drinking too much?

Experts from the Kaiser Wellness Center headed by its addiction rehabilitation specialist Dr. Maher Soudah weigh in on the amount of alcohol a person can tolerate and how they become alcoholics.

Determining What Is “Safe” In Alcohol Consumption

There are different standards for measuring drinking levels all over the world. In the United Kingdom, experts define “safe” alcohol consumption levels at not more than 14 units of alcohol in a period of one week. However, one alcohol unit cannot be explained as an equal to one glass drink as it depends on the type of liquor and size of the glass involved.

In the United States, the government defined “safe” alcohol drinking at 1 drink per day for females and 2 drinks for males, per the “Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020” from the Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Agriculture. This amount is still considered at a “moderate level” of drinking.

Alcohol Tolerance Factors

While there are already standard metrics in determining what is within the safe line in alcohol consumption, experts explained that a person’s tolerance to the substance changes over time, depending on specific circumstances. In fact, Dr. Soudah and his team reiterated that there are several factors that determine whether or not a person can get drunk easily.

1. Size

A person’s size— or more specifically, his or her body mass index— is one of the determining factors of alcohol tolerance. In general, an individual will be able to metabolize one drink of alcohol per hour, but a bigger and heavier person would feel its effects a bit later because of his or her size.

2. Gender

Saying that women are less tolerant to alcohol than men is more than sexism— it is supported by science. According to experts at the Kaiser Wellness Center, females get intoxicated quicker because their bodies have less alcohol dehydrogenase, the enzymes responsible for breaking down alcohol during the metabolism process.

3. Ethnicity

Some scientists support the idea that different races have varying alcohol tolerance. Russians, Romanians, and the Irish are deemed to have the highest alcohol tolerance while Asians tend to get drunk more easily in comparison. This is because of different races have varying genetic makeups and metabolic chemicals in the body. Asians, for example, are said to have a mutation in their genes on the enzyme acetaldehyde dehydrogenase.

4. Age

A person’s age is also a major factor in his or her alcohol tolerance because it brings about biological changes in the body. Those in their 30s, as well as women who have passed through their menopausal phase, are more likely to get drunk than those considered in their “prime age.” Again, this involves chemical alterations in the body. In a postmenopausal lady’s case, it involves lower levels of the hormone, estrogen, that slows down metabolism.

5. Mood

Emotions and feelings also affect a person’s alcohol tolerance in a sense that those who feel sad, angry, or anxious can get drunk a lot quicker than those who are happy or excited. This is because a person’s mood brings about change in enzymes present in the stomach that is responsible for breaking down alcohol.

6. Rate Of Consumption

The rate of consumption is another factor to consider when determining a person’s alcohol tolerance because those who chug down liquor bring about an “overdosing” effect in the body which causes it to shut down. Experts revealed that the human liver can only sift through one standard-sized drink in a period of one hour so drinking a lot quicker than that would mean getting drunk quickly.

7. Food And Other Drinks Consumed

Individuals who drink without eating anything beforehand have a higher chance of getting drunk in just 30 minutes while those who took a full meal have at least one hour. However, people who mix liquor with bubbly drinks and soda tend to get drunk a lot faster because these beverages hasten the absorption of alcohol in the body.