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Text messages may also reduce binge drinking in young adults

Text messages reduce binge drinking
Text messages reduce binge drinking
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

A Psych Central report suggested that text messages from doctors should be sent to a binge drinker after an episode of binge drinking when they are sober, according to a recent study published in Annals of Emergency Medicine.

The study said young adults with a history of binge drinking had reduced their binge drinking days by as much as 51 percent after receiving a text message query or feedback from the their doctors following their Emergency Room visit.

According to the report, concerned people who have witnessed a person engage in binge drinking behavior should send the person a text message the morning after as they are nursing a hangover. Otherwise, it “could quickly backfire,” the report said.

“You definitely should not text an alcoholic about her drinking while she is drunk. That’s a sure way to start a fight and lose a BFF. Parents should probably not send a random text to their kids asking how much they drank last night either,” said Psych Central columnist and former alcoholic Christine Stapleton in the report.

She said that during her time, text messages and mobile phones were not yet in use. Had she received a text then, she may have “freaked out” and burned bridges, but it “would have made me think about my drinking,” she said.

Stapleton recommends sending the binge drinker a text message “the next afternoon when the hangover is in full throttle.”

“Don’t hit her hard. Don’t judge. Don’t suggest they cut back or quit. Just let her know that you’re aware of how much she is drinking. We alcoholics like to think no one notices how much we’re drinking or that everyone else is drinking as much as we are. Don’t use the “A” word– alcoholic,” she said.

She added that the key to seeking treatment for alcoholism is recognizing that “you have no power over alcohol” and your “life is unmanageable.” But that text message could do wonders in speeding up the process.

“That little cyber tap on the shoulder might do more than help an alcoholic get sober. It might change her life. Forever,” she said.

Admitting that they have a problem is the first step alcoholics need to take in their transition to a sober life. Many forms of treatments are available, including naltrexone, an antagonist drug that prevents alcohol molecules from attaching to receptors in the brain’s pleasure center, curbing the alcoholic’s physical cravings and preventing him or her from finding pleasure in drinking. BioCorRx, Inc. (OTCQB: BICX) is a leading example of a company that incorporates the use of naltrexone in the form of a biodegradable implant in its rehabilitation program called the Start Fresh Program.

The Start Fresh Program also involves a life coaching program tailored to the specific needs of the alcoholic to help him or her plan an alcohol-free life. It differs from the usual “rehab” approach, as it is conducted in a series of private, one-on-one sessions that involve only the patient, the life coach and an accompanying recovery partner such as a friend or family member if desired.