Moderation Management is an evidence-based secular organization dedicated to helping people with problem drinking achieve greater control over their drinking.
Someone considered a “problem drinker” isn’t necessarily addicted to alcohol, but their drinking may still be serious. If a woman enjoys a glass of wine with dinner each night, but on just one of those nights, drinks more than one glass, she is pushing the threshold beyond moderate drinking. Men can metabolize alcohol faster than women and can have up to two glasses before they are considered higher risk for the long-term damage caused by problem drinking. Problem drinking occurs when these thresholds are crossed often enough to cause health, family, or career troubles.
How Does Moderation Management Work?
Moderation Management programs work to change behaviors associated with drinking. It works by identifying patterns of drinking and empowers an individual to set boundaries and goals to reduce overall alcohol consumption. Nearly a third of those who participate in Moderation Management programming move on to an abstinence-based program like Alcoholics Anonymous. However, the majority of participants choose to continue drinking on some level, while addressing the fundamental issues making them more vulnerable to the effects of alcohol.
Moderation Management involves nine steps toward improving attitudes and behaviors toward drinking. These steps require regular meeting attendance, whether online or in person. And though the program is not an abstinence only program, it does ask individuals to quit drinking for a period of 30 days. During this 30-day period, participants are asked to consider the effects of alcohol on their lives, to create a list of goals and priorities, to examine patterns in how often you drank and the circumstances surrounding alcohol consumption, and to learn the guidelines and limits for moderate drinking as described by the program.
The last three steps involve setting limits and restoring balance to one’s life, regular review of progress as well as creating new goals based on that progress, and making other positive changes in life, including meeting attendance as needed.
The program is free and open to anyone who is serious about limiting their consumption of alcohol.
What As A Moderate Drinker?
There are some specific guidelines set down by the program that define what a moderate drinker is. Generally speaking, however, the goal of the program is to help you achieve drinking at a level that does not cause physical harm to you or others, or disruptions of your family, career, or any other aspect of your lifestyle.
Specifically, Moderation Management sets the following limits:
- That a person obey laws relating to drinking and driving
- That a person does not endanger themselves or others by drinking
- That a person does not drink daily, and that they limit drinking to three or four times weekly
- That women not exceed 1 unit of alcohol daily
- That men not exceed 2 units of alcohol daily
- That blood alcohol levels (BAC) do not exceed .055 percent
An individual may limit themselves further according to their own needs and goals.
Difference Between Drinking Problem And Alcohol Addiction
If you find it difficult to abstain from drinking for the initial 30-day period, or following cannot meet your moderation goals, an abstinence-only program may be recommended. If you are unable to slow your drinking without experiencing alcohol withdrawal symptoms, you may be physically addicted to alcohol. This is a more serious condition and requires a medically supervised treatment program that can monitor and mediate withdrawal symptoms as you undergo rehabilitation for the addiction.
Withdrawal symptoms include anxiety, shakiness, profuse sweating, agitation or mood changes, gastrointestinal upset and headache, increased heart rate, and confusion. These symptoms vary in severity with the severity of the addiction. Someone who has been drinking for some time and is addicted to alcohol may experience more severe symptoms including seizures and heart attack.
Problem drinking, as addressed by a moderation management program, involves drinking in excess to points that generate complications in your life. For example, you may only drink on the weekends with friends, but tend to drink a lot, causing black-outs or memory lapses. This type of drinking, while not necessarily an addiction, can cause many ill-health as well as unintended consequences caused by impaired judgement.
Benefits Of Moderation Management
One significant benefit of moderation management is the educational component in helping an individual understand safe limits of alcohol consumption. This limits the long-term adverse health effects of problem drinking, like damage to the brain, liver, and other organ systems, as well as deterring unintended consequences like auto-related accidents or falls.
Moderation management also works to help an individual achieve balance in their lives, in some cases reducing overall stressors related to drinking. This can have an overarching positive effect on the individual, an individual’s immediate family, and close friends. Learning to set and achieve goals can also play a pivotal role in helping a person learn to advance in other areas of their lives.
Get Control Of Your Life Before Alcohol Does
AlcoholTreatment.net is your online resource for the professional support and comprehensive, evidence-based treatment options, including Moderation Management, available to meet your individual needs. Regaining control of your life over alcohol begins with one confidential phone call.
Contact AlcoholTreatment.net today and discover all the rewards that come with sobriety.