Regardless of age, class, income group, profession, gender, and country, people consume alcohol. Drinking alcohol occasionally may not be harmful. But when it becomes an addiction, it becomes harmful and often life-threatening. According to the reports of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, approximately 15 million people are struggling with alcohol use disorder.
Alcohol addiction is a disorder where you are not able to reduce or stop your alcohol consumption, even though you know that it will damage your health and will pose trouble for your personal and professional life. So, if you know someone who is an alcohol addict, you must take them to rehab.
If you feel that your loved one is addicted to alcohol, you need to take the necessary steps to prevent health issues or death caused by alcohol consumption. Take the help of professionals from a rehab center like Serenity Oaks Alcohol & Drug Rehab, which will provide holistic programs and individual treatment to help them overcome the challenges, thus helping the individual to recover from the addiction and reducing the possibility of relapse. A rehab like this will help the individual to remove their dependency on alcohol and will guide them to a path of sobriety.
Drinking a glass of wine on special occasions or sipping a beer while watching your favorite sports may seem like a harmless activity. But one cannot say when the thin line between the occasional drinking and addiction gets blurred. Therefore, if you or someone you know is showing the following signs, address the issue immediately.
Physical signs of alcohol addiction
You can look for the following signs to see whether you or your loved one is dependent on alcohol.
Lack of control over alcohol intake
If you are not able to control the interval between your alcohol consumption or if you are not able to control the amount of alcohol you drink, take professional help immediately. If you are addicted, you may not be able to stop drinking once you start and will not be able to control your urge to drink, even if the situation is inappropriate.
Alcohol becomes your priority
You may not be able to control your urge to drink alcohol even though you are fully aware of its dangers and the health issues it poses. Your health, responsibilities, daily activities, and your usual hobbies won’t excite you. Your sole priority becomes alcohol.
Showing withdrawal symptoms
After consuming alcohol for a long time, your body will increase its tolerance. To get the same effect, you will have to drink more alcohol. If you reduce the amount of alcohol you drink, you may experience withdrawal symptoms such as insomnia, nausea, anxiety, depression, headaches, shivering, and more.
You may develop mouth ulcers, stomach issues, menstrual disruption, and numbness of your hand and feet. You may also face short-term health issues like alcohol poisoning or long-term issues like heart diseases, strokes, liver diseases, and weakening of the immune system. Drinking too much can also result in short-term memory loss or dementia.
Psychological signs of alcoholism
Usually, it is very easy to understand the physical signs, but the case is not the same with psychological symptoms. These symptoms are very hard to identify, yet they are extremely dangerous. If you are an alcohol addict, you will have the urge to drink to stop the effects of withdrawal symptoms. You may not be able to control your craving for alcohol and may drink more than what you intended.
Alcohol addicts may also feel guilt for drinking and will try to hide it from others. If someone confronts them, they may become aggressive or try to argue. They may also have difficulty concentrating, and coordinating, and may have troubled memory. They may even develop long-term effects like depression and anxiety.
Behavioral signs of alcohol abuse
If your loved one is behaving oddly and very different from their normal self, try to address the issue immediately. An addicted person may not show any interest in their daily activities, family, work, or their hobbies and would prefer to spend time drinking. You may not feel like maintaining your social commitments and will try to avoid crowds and conversation. Even if you were very connected with your family and friends, a person who is dependent on drinking may neglect their responsibilities. They may become very irritated and aggressive when confronted or talked about uncomfortable things.
Remember that there is only a thin line between casual or binge drinking and substance abuse. It may become a habit even before you know it. Therefore, if you notice any of these symptoms in yourself or your loved ones, do not ignore them. Understand the seriousness of the issues and seek professional help immediately.