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Page medically reviewed by Dee Johnson (MbacpMNCS), Addiction Therapist at Priory Hospital Chelmsford in August 2022.

For many people, enjoying the occasional alcoholic drink can be a harmless pleasure. However, if your drinking is becoming more frequent, this can soon spiral into a serious problem. Alcohol addiction, also known as ‘alcoholism’ or ‘alcohol use disorder’, develops when someone drinks alcohol in an excessive way, leading to their body becoming dependent on alcohol in order to function on a daily basis.

At Priory, we recognise that without expert support, alcohol addiction can cause a range of long-term physical and psychological problems, and can even be fatal. However, it’s important to understand that you don’t have to struggle alone; alcohol addiction is treatable and we can help you every step of the way towards recovery.

Our Alcohol Rehab Hospitals

We have a network of hospitals nationwide that provide alcohol rehab on both an inpatient and outpatient basis. Take a look at some of our hospitals below then use our location finder to help find an alcohol rehab clinic near you.

Spotlight on Priory Woodbourne in Birmingham

Located within a tranquil suburb of South West Birmingham, Priory Hospital Woodbourne is one of the UK’s leading addiction treatment and rehabilitation centres. 

Watch this short video to find out more:

Find more Priory locations

When to get Alcohol Addiction Help

There are a number of signs to look out for that may suggest you’re struggling with alcoholism and should seek support.

Some of the most common symptoms of alcohol addiction include:

  • Finding that you’ve built a tolerance to alcohol, meaning that you need to drink more to feel ‘drunk’
  • Drinking heavily on your own, even to the point of passing out
  • Intense cravings for alcohol, to the extent that these affect your mood and concentration levels
  • Missing out on special occasions due to your drinking habits
  • Feeling as though alcohol has taken over your life
  • Lying or being deceptive about your drinking habits
  • Continuing to drink despite the negative effects this has had on your home, work, social life or your mental health
Addiction therapist Dee Johnson on how you define addiction:

"A chronic, relapsing mental health disorder that creates a psychological, physical and emotional dependency on a substance or behaviour. A person with addiction will continue to use in spite and despite any risky, adverse or harmful consequences. The person will be unable to successfully stop or reduce their use, even if there have been attempts to."

As well as looking out for the signs above, you can also use a screening test to determine whether you might be struggling with an addiction to alcohol. A commonly-used method is the alcohol use disorders identification test (AUDIT). This consists of a series of questions that help you to identify your level of risk for alcohol dependence.

What Happens in Alcohol Rehab?

At Priory, the first step in your alcohol rehabilitation journey is to go through our free alcohol addiction assessment. This takes place with one of our addiction specialists at any one of our addiction rehab centres across the UK. Our dedicated free assessment guide offers in-depth information on what can be expected if you seek help and support for an addiction with Priory.

A Free Addiction Assessment at Priory

If you’re struggling with addiction, we understand the challenges you’re facing and we’re here to help.

We have trained advisers available to speak to you right away, by calling 0330 056 6023. We can discuss your concerns in complete confidence, explore options for treatment, and help you to understand what will work best for you.

We’ll also help you to book your free addiction assessment there and then, with appointments usually available within a few days.

We know that taking the first step can be difficult, but we’re here to support - with no pressure or judgement. Help is just a phone call away.

Book your assessment


Depending on the severity of your alcohol addiction, you may need to go through our medically assisted detox process when you first come in for treatment. During detox, you’ll be supported to stop drinking and we’ll also help you to manage any unpleasant alcohol withdrawal symptoms you might experience when you no longer have alcohol in your system.

During alcohol detox, you’ll have access to round-the-clock care to make sure you’re comfortable at all times. We can also prescribe medication if needed, to help with your symptoms.


As soon as you’re physically able, you’ll be able to commence with our intensive programme of addiction therapy. Therapy usually takes place as part of a group, although you will also have individual sessions with members of your addiction treatment team.

We use a whole range of tried-and-tested therapeutic methods to help you with your addiction. These include techniques such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT), transactional analysis (TA) and mindfulness. We also offer a wide range of wellbeing activities to help you stay healthy in mind, body and spirit while you’re with us. These can vary depending on the rehab centre you’re receiving treatment at, but can include things like meditation, yoga and other exercise activities such as walking.


We’re committed to your ongoing recovery when you leave treatment, which is why we offer comprehensive aftercare to everyone who completes an Addiction Treatment Programme. Aftercare provides you with ongoing therapy and support, as well as access to alumni events, helping you stay connected within our community and continue building on your recovery.

What Strategies are used to Treat Alcoholism?

Alcohol addiction treatment at Priory is delivered as part of our comprehensive Addiction Treatment Programme. This typically lasts for 28 days and consists of you staying at one of our nationwide alcohol rehab centres on a residential basis.

Fast Access to Residential Treatment

We are currently able to offer fast access to private inpatient treatment at Priory. Please call us today and speak to our expert advisors.
Call: 0330 056 6024
Alternatively, you can complete our online enquiry form.

During private addiction rehab, you will have the opportunity to undergo a medically assisted detoxification (detox) if this is required, before progressing to intensive individual and group addiction therapy. This will help you to address the source of your addictive behaviours, increase your self-awareness and take steps towards recovery. Whilst 28 days is the recommended treatment time for alcohol addiction, treatment lengths at Priory can be flexible according to your unique needs, requirements and commitments.

Support for alcohol addiction at Priory is evidence-based, tailored to individual needs and circumstances, and structured within National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines. Our leading alcohol Addiction Treatment Programme consists of:

  • Free, no obligation alcohol addiction assessment, allowing you to discuss your concerns in confidence, receive guidance on next steps and develop an understanding of your journey towards rehabilitation and recovery
  • 7-10 day medically assisted alcohol detox, if this is required
  • Individual 1:1 therapy, online therapy and structured group therapy programmes
  • Family and couples therapy programmes
  • Access to both on and off-site 12-Step supports groups
  • Evidence-based therapeutic techniques and a range of wellbeing activities
  • Free aftercare for 12 months following treatment (aftercare is provided for life following treatment at Priory Hospital Roehampton)
  • Free family support for 12 months following treatment (family support is provided for life following treatment at Priory Hospital Roehampton)

As well as inpatient treatment, we can also deliver alcohol addiction support in an outpatient or day care capacity, depending on your needs. These treatment options can be used as an entry-point to addiction treatment, or as a step-down for people who have completed a residential stay with us.

Alcohol Addiction Treatment Specialists

Our highly qualified treatment team have extensive clinical experience in treating alcohol addiction. We can deliver a wide range of established techniques to help you to address your symptoms, and resolve the underlying causes and triggers of alcohol addiction.

My recovery journey - Anne and Jodie

Listen to Anne and Jodie's inspirational recovery story, as Anne overcomes alcoholism with the help of treatment at Priory Hospital Hayes Grove. 

We ensure that each individual who seeks support with us is placed at the centre of their rehab journey. This means that you will benefit from a collaborative treatment experience that produces the most positive outcomes for you as an individual.

In addition, all of our alcohol treatment centres offer peaceful, homely and highly compassionate environments. At Priory, we provide you with the ideal setting in which to address your challenges and get well again.

Remember, you don’t have to struggle with alcohol addiction. Recovery is possible and we can help you get back on track.

Free Addiction Assessment

Book a FREE Confidential Assessment at your Nearest Priory Hospital Today.

0330 056 6023
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For more information about the addiction services that Priory offer, download our brochure.

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