There are many myths surrounding alcohol addiction. Despite what the clinical data shows, conventional wisdom still dictates that individuals with alcohol use disorders suffer from a weakness of will: that if they genuinely wanted to reduce their alcohol consumption, they could. In reality, addiction specialists have known for decades that alcohol addiction — or alcohol use disorder (AUD), as it is known in the scientific community — is a disease that changes the chemistry of the brain. The myths surrounding recovery are no less pervasive. For more than a century, the preferred narrative of recovery in America revolves around the idea that in order to free yourself from alcohol use disorder, you must acknowledge a power higher than yourself and abstain from all alcohol use. This method has undoubtedly worked for many people. Still, it has also perpetuated the idea that the problem is with the person suffering from the disease and not with the disease itself. At Deerhaven Gardens, we believe that there is a more effective way to treat alcohol use disorder. That way is the Sinclair Method.
What Is the Sinclair Method?
The process by which the Sinclair Method works is not complicated or difficult to understand. The patient is given oral doses of the FDA-approved medication naltrexone. Naltrexone is what is called an “opioid antagonist,” which means that it binds to the opioid receptors in the brain. By blocking these opioid receptors, the brain is no longer able to feel the pleasure that it has grown accustomed to feeling when the patient consumes alcohol.
The Sinclair Method involves taking an opioid antagonist an hour before you know you are going to drink alcohol, ensuring that once you begin drinking, you will not feel its effects. By breaking this behavior/reward cycle, the patient eventually wants to consume less rather than more. This process is sometimes referred to as “pharmacological extinction”; by using targeted medication, addictive behaviors can be erased.
This change of behavior does not occur in a vacuum, and it is not a “quick-fix” cure-all for alcohol use disorder. Patients who use the Sinclair Method must take naltrexone or a similar opioid blocker for the rest of their lives. They must also undergo psychotherapy to understand their behaviors better so that they can effectively modify them.
To learn more about the Sinclair Method, reach out to the C Three Foundation or contact the experienced staff at Deerhaven Gardens today.
Benefits of the Sinclair Method
There are numerous benefits associated with the Sinclair Method. Among these are:
- The Sinclair Method is effective in 78% of cases. This is comparatively far more effective than more traditional methods of treating alcohol use disorder.
- The Sinclair Method does not involve detoxification. Detox, even when it is medically supervised, constitutes an enormous strain on the body, and alcohol detox can be particularly dangerous, especially for long-time sufferers of AUD.
- The mental and physical symptoms of alcohol detox, including a range of painful withdrawal symptoms, most often result in relapse, which is avoided using the Sinclair Method.
- The Sinclair Method is much easier than traditional addiction treatment. The patient takes a pill each time they plan to drink, and their craving for alcohol eventually returns to normal.
- Once they have been introduced to the Sinclair Method and are comfortable, patients can go about their regular activities and fulfill the responsibilities of work, school, and family just as they did before addiction.
A question that we often receive at Deerhaven Gardens involves why, given the comparatively high success rate of the Sinclair Method, is it not better known. The answer is, tragically, somewhat predictable. In the first place, Dr. Sinclair’s approach to addiction treatment has, in fact, been embraced by the recovery community, but less so in America than in other parts of the world. This has more to do with the unwillingness of the American recovery community to change their methods than with the efficacy of the Method.
The Sinclair Method at Deerhaven Gardens
At Deerhaven Gardens, we offer a boutique, luxury addiction treatment program that features the Sinclair Method at its very center. Our treatment center treats only women suffering from alcohol use disorder, and we make a point of ensuring that each treatment plan is customized to meet the individual needs of each resident. Because we understand the importance of this level of individualized care, we only treat up to six residents at a time. We also understand the importance of privacy and comfort as our residents embark upon their new lives. To this end, our five-star resort-style addiction treatment center features a broad range of amenities and breathtaking natural scenery, including gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains.
Among the addiction therapy services we offer to accompany the Sinclair Method are:
- Psychotherapy, including cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, trauma-informed care, and classical psychoanalysis
- Motivational interviewing
- Solution-focused brief therapy
- Psychoeducational therapy
- Biosound therapy
Contact Deerhaven Gardens Today
At Deerhaven Gardens, our goal is simple: give our clients the tools they need to achieve long-term control of their alcohol consumption. We have found no more effective way to do this than the Sinclair Method. Learn more about what Deerhaven can do for you by reaching out to us online or calling 828.655.7525 today.