Novel web-based interventions effective in preventing alcohol abuse

Novel web-based interventions effective in preventing alcohol abuse

With the increased acceptance of drinking during celebrations and social occasions, alcohol abuse has become a global issue that afflicts millions of people. The 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) has highlighted that nearly 86.4 percent of people in the age group 18 and above admitted to drinking alcohol at some point in their lifetime.

Moreover, it is the world’s number one risk factor for ill-health and premature death among people in the age group 25 to 59 years. Besides social and psychological effects, alcohol abuse can pose a major hurdle for the economy by increasing loss of productivity. Other detrimental effects of alcohol abuse include vandalism, aggressive behavior, drunk driving, etc.

Although numerous advanced intervention programs have been integrated and established to diminish the dire consequences of alcohol, there have not been many significant changes in the consequences of alcohol abuse. However, effective web-based intervention programs can help in developing a positive approach toward meeting the goals.

Internet-based intervention programs have displayed positive effects on drinking behavior and drinking motivation of both men and women. These computerized programs interact with users by generating automatic responses, which are effective in reaching out to a larger audience in a short span of time.

These types of services aimed at providing assistance and treatment through real time or email, without any face-to-face contact. In recent years, such intervention measures have become comparatively more popular than other interventions owing to its advantages over other treatment options.

Reach of online interventions increasing rapidly

In recent years, due to the preference of web-based alcohol programs over other intervention modes, the number of online intervention programs for alcohol abuse has increased rapidly. The rise of online therapies over other approaches has become incredibly popular due to their convenience, exclusivity, and flexibility in delivering interesting and significant information to its audience.

Moreover, web-based programs, as mentioned before, have the efficacy to reach out to a large number of audience with comparatively low delivery cost than other methods. However, these intervention programs, rather than trying to implement extensive theory-based individual challenges on the intervention affair, integrate targeted feedback that is based on group alcohol norms.

This new form of intervention offers treatment at the doorsteps of the patients. In fact, web-based intervention programs have been hailed as a feasible mode of assessing and addressing the challenges of alcohol abuse. By providing feedback based on a person’s demographic characteristics and incorporating feedback on an individual’s characteristics like behavioral change, computerized interventions programs can turn to be effective in tailoring the treatment.

Understanding pros and cons of web-based interventions

The Internet allows people to have wide access to information related to alcohol use disorders (AUD). By focusing on the cognitive-behavioral aspect of the patients, these interventions have subsequently yielded positive results in terms of treating depression, anxiety, specific phobia and alcohol abuse. Although several web-based interventions have proved effective in treating alcohol use and its related disorders, there have not been concrete outcomes from the general Internet-based intervention studies.

However, a meta-analysis, which included over 35,000 participants and evaluated 82 separate computer-delivered interventions found that computer-delivered interventions can help in improving individuals in a variety of health behaviors related to substance and alcohol abuse. However, a study has assessed the adequacy of web-based personalized feedback program delivered to the workplace of young adults, which indicated a significant decrease in the level of drinking compared to those in the control group at 30-day follow-up.

Seek professional treatment to successfully curb addiction

New interventions such as web-based programs broaden the horizon of addiction treatment. However, it is equally important to seek the help of a medical expert to diagnose the severity of the addiction and the prevalence of any mental health disorder. Only after a thorough diagnosis and assessment, a proper intervention program can be advised to achieve sobriety.

Abusing and misusing alcohol has led to an unprecedented increase in the number of deaths, with an estimate of about 88,000 people annually. This makes alcohol the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the United States. Therefore, it is important to identify the risky behaviors and seek help from well-managed alcohol addiction treatment centers offering holistic treatment to achieve sobriety.

If you or someone you know is suffering from any alcohol-related problem, contact the Alcohol Addiction Get Help Helpline. Call us at our 24/7 helpline number 866-281-3014 or chat online to find out more about the best alcohol addiction treatment centers.

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