What Is an Alcohol Abuse Hotline or Helpline Number?
An alcohol abuse hotline or helpline number is a phone support service that helps answer questions about alcohol addiction. Some hotlines are toll-free and operate 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. Depending on the agency that maintains the service, an alcohol support hotline can provide assistance in a number of ways, including general information on the signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorders and/or alcohol treatment resources.
If you or a loved one needs information and support, a phone call to an alcohol addiction helpline is a good way to get in touch with someone who can help you find the resources you need to begin recovery. There are many questions concerning drug- and alcohol-related issues that can start to be addressed with an alcohol helpline call. Hotline staff will be able to connect those in need with a number of alcohol addiction treatment centers that treat alcohol use disorder.
Should You Seek Help for Alcohol Misuse?
Alcohol misuse is different for each person and can be difficult to identify. However, there are certain indicators common among individuals struggling with a drinking problem. The following criteria are used by professionals to assess if a person has an alcohol use disorder (AUD) and may be helpful in deciding when to seek help with alcoholism in order to achieve sobriety:1
- Drinking alcohol in larger amounts than intended.
- Craving alcohol.
- Persistently wanting to or unsuccessfully trying to decrease or control alcohol use.
- Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from alcohol.
- Using alcohol repeatedly in dangerous situations.
- Continuing using alcohol even though it is causing or worsening trouble with relationships or causing other social issues.
- Having problems fulfilling important responsibilities at school, work, or home due to regular drinking.
- Stopping or decreasing important activities because of alcohol use.
- Continuing drinking even when knowing that it is likely causing or worsening a physical or psychological problem.
- Experiencing tolerance.
- Going through withdrawal or drinking to avoid/relieve withdrawal.
If you or a loved one has experienced 2 or more of these signs of alcohol misuse within the last 12 months, it may be time to seek help by calling an alcohol hotline.
Signs of Alcohol Dependency
Dependence is when an individual can only function normally if a drug or alcohol is present; it is not the same as addiction.2 Suddenly stopping alcohol use, or drastically cutting down use, can lead to withdrawal symptoms. Common alcohol withdrawal symptoms may include:1
- Hand tremors.
Alcohol withdrawal can be severe and even fatal, so anyone with alcohol withdrawal symptoms should contact a medical provider. If serious symptoms occur (fever, seizures, hallucinations, irregular heartbeat, or delirium), call 911.1, 3
You do not have to be dependent on alcohol to experience the potentially devastating effects of alcohol use. If you think you or a loved one might be an alcoholic and could possibly benefit from rehab treatment or other professional help, there are alcohol addiction hotline numbers you can call.
Should I Call an Alcohol Abuse Hotline Number?
People suffering from alcohol misuse, as well as their family and friends, might be aware of an issue with alcohol, but they aren’t sure of how to get help. While it can be scary or uncomfortable to pick up the phone, calling an alcohol addiction hotline could be an important first step toward starting on the path to recovery. Getting the right help can provide you with the support you need to stop drinking for good.
What if I’m Uncomfortable Calling an Alcohol Helpline?
Feeling uncomfortable or afraid to call a helpline is normal. Alcohol helplines are staffed by caring people who understand your struggles and won’t judge you. They are there to help you get the support you need with no financial risks or obligations when placing a call.
Some might take comfort in knowing that they aren’t the only ones placing alcoholic hotline calls. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which operates its own helpline, reported 833,598 calls in 2020.4 It’s a staggering number that represents the many people in need of information about alcohol addiction and treatment.
You can also take the first step toward alcohol treatment and recovery by checking your insurance coverage online, instantly and at no cost or commitment. Checking what your benefits cover with an American Addiction Centers facility will ensure that your payment requirements are considered from the beginning. You can use the form below to determine whether your insurance provider will cover addiction treatment. If you do not have insurance, there are other financing options to help cover the cost of alcohol rehab.
Free National 24-Hour Alcohol Abuse and Addiction Hotline Numbers
The following national alcohol helpline numbers may offer additional helpful resources to those struggling with alcohol use, narcotics use, or other problems that may be connected to addiction.
In the event of an emergency, call 911.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
- 1 (800) 662-HELP (4357)
- SAMHSA’s National 24-hour addiction hotline is available 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Their focus is those with substance use disorders and/or mental illness and their loved ones, and they can provide information and referrals. They also have an online Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator.
- 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline
- The Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals in the United States.
- Boys Town National Hotline
- 1 (800) 448-3000
- This crisis, resource, and referral helpline is staffed by people who can provide information about a variety of issues, including alcohol use, and help callers find needed resources. Their hotline is available 24/7.
- National Runaway Safeline
- 1 (800) RUNAWAY (786-2929)
- The Safeline provides help for young people who have run away, are homeless or are otherwise at-risk. Their helpline is available 24/7.
How to Prepare to Call an Alcohol Abuse Hotline for Help
Ready to make a call but unsure of what to ask? Questions may differ depending on whether you are speaking with someone on a general alcohol crisis hotline or somebody who works for a specific treatment facility. When speaking to someone at a general alcohol hotline, consider questions such as:
- What addiction treatment resources are in my area? The hotline staff may be able to direct you to both public and private substance abuse programs near you.
- What does addiction treatment usually entail? Many people seeking help for the first time don’t know what to expect. Make sure to ask the alcohol hotline staff any questions you have. Knowing more about what generally happens during treatment may help you feel more comfortable about going.
As for speaking with somebody associated with specific alcohol rehab facilities, questions you might want to ask could include:
- Will my insurance pay for treatment? Have your insurance card ready so that you can give as much information as is needed to determine your coverage.
- What types of treatment are available? This may include inpatient or outpatient services and other amenities.
- How long does treatment typically take? The length of treatment will depend on the level of care as assessed by a professional. Be sure to ask what options the rehab facility has for treatment length to ensure that you’ll have access to the proper level of care.
- Will I have to go through detox? Ask if the rehab facility includes drug or alcohol detox, which is often an important first phase of recovery before entering other forms of treatment.
- Where is the facility located? Some people prefer to stay close to home while in treatment. Others may prefer to be in an environment separate from their daily life to focus on their recovery.
- How much does addiction treatment cost? Treatment cost varies depending on a number of factors including the facility, type of treatment, amenities, location, and other services. You may be looking for free or low-cost rehab treatment near you, or for specialized programs like holistic treatment programs. Be sure to ask if the facility offers financing, payment plans, or grants that may assist with covering the cost of treatment.
These lists are only a small sample of questions you might have. It may be helpful to take a couple minutes to assemble your own list of personal questions before you call.
You can also receive 24/7 text support at your convenience with American Addiction Centers. Our team is well prepared to advise on all things treatment and help you find the care you need. We’ve helped thousands recover from addiction and we can help you too. You can contact AAC for free at .
Substance-Specific Hotline Numbers and Resources
- Cocaine Addiction Hotline Numbers
- Heroin Addiction Hotline Numbers
- Marijuana Addiction Hotline Numbers
- Crystal Meth Addiction Hotline Numbers
- Prescription Drug Addiction Hotline Numbers
- Opiate Addiction Hotline Numbers
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- State-Funded Rehab Programs