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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved medications for treating alcohol dependence, and others are being tested to determine whether they are effective such as:

  • Naltrexone can help people from drinking.
  • Acamprosate makes it easier to maintain abstinence.

It is important to remember that not all people will respond to medications, but for a subset of individuals, they can be an important tool in overcoming alcohol dependence. It is also important to remember that medications alone may not be effective. Some patients may need a combination of medication, talk therapy, and recovery groups to be successful.

Scientists are working to develop a larger menu of pharmaceutical treatments that could be tailored to individual needs. As more medications become available, people may be able to try multiple medications to find which they respond to best.

Learn about FDA approved medications for alcohol use disorder (PDF).

Talk to your doctor about medication options to help with your alcohol use disorder. You can also speak to one of our clinicians and support staff:

Dr. Julio Meza
Dr. Amy Richards 
Addiction Medicine
UCLA Family Health Center
1920 Colorado Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Dr. Kumar Felipe Vasudevan
Dr. Jonathan Quach
UCLA Addiction Medicine Bridge Clinic
200 Med Plaza Suite 425
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Currently, clinics are on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays