How to Identify and Overcome Alcohol Cravings


After walking away from a dependence on alcohol to function, the body and the mind are going to have moments when another drink seems like a good idea. For some, the cravings come when hanging out with friends at a party. Others may experience the pull when stressful situations arise. No matter what the reason, it’s important to be aware of cravings and have a game plan for how to deal with them.

Something that causes alcohol cravings’ symptoms is often called a trigger. External triggers are things outside of yourself that may remind you of how it feels to drink. Internal triggers have more to do with you and what is going on in your mind or body. Either way, it’s important to be able to recognize the triggers and acknowledge the fact that you may need help with alcohol cravings. You don’t always have to manage the situation alone.

There are several things that you can do to manage these triggers. The first step is making it inconvenient to get alcohol. Don’t keep any in the house, and don’t frequent locations that have it readily available. While this does affect your social life in some ways, the people who care most about you will be willing to make accommodations for you and your goal of maintained sobriety. The people who live with you will understand why having any type of alcohol around can cause cravings, creating the potential for relapse. Having the right people around can promote your continued recovery success.

Even if you avoid certain places and situations, there will still be moments when the alcohol craving symptoms will arise and you need a game plan for how to deal with them. Sometimes, it’s enough to take a step back and remember why you’ve chosen sobriety over alcoholism. Thinking about how alcohol consumed your life and wreaked havoc on relationships may be enough to push away the cravings and offer an easy solution for the way you feel.

At other times, you may need to rely on someone you can trust. Talking to another person and explaining how you feel can be beneficial. It can be a loved one or a counselor, but either way, you want to find someone who is going to be understanding and supportive.

Another coping skill for dealing with alcohol cravings’ symptoms is to distract yourself. This can be another opportunity to take advantage of your support system, too. When you sit and think about taking just one drink, it can be difficult to push the thoughts away. Find an activity that can take your mind off of the desires. Go for a walk, do yoga, or even make an appointment for acupuncture. Getting involved in another activity can really make a difference in your ability to deal with cravings.

If you still need help with alcohol cravings despite going through all of these steps, you aren’t alone. Even with a support system in place, there are times when the temptation for one drink can seem overwhelming. If you’re starting to see an increase in alcohol craving symptoms and you have concerns about a relapse, WhiteSands Treatment Center, an accredited rehabilitation facility located in Florida, is here to help. We offer private counseling for those interested in getting assistance from board-certified professionals with years of experience dealing with addiction and alcoholism. Our customized programs can educate you on cravings and how to deal with them. From medications that can decrease the urges to therapy for you and your loved ones, our personalized rehab and support services can provide the tools you need to get and stay sober. Fill out the form here to get help now.