It is easy enough to tell when someone has been drinking. Signs include slurred speech, lowered inhibitions, the smell of alcohol on their breath, and a lack of coordination. But to recognize a problem drinker, it may be a matter of adding up the out-of-sync behaviors over time, depending on how close one is to this individual. If your drinking is getting out of control, you may not be the first to know it. You may be in denial, but your family, friends, and coworkers can recognize the signs. Maybe you are one of those people who are adept at hiding your flaws. You don’t think anyone has noticed that you are drinking more than normal, but that is the point where you start lying to yourself.
If you notice a problem, other people will notice, too, but they may feel uncomfortable broaching the subject with you. There are several signs that your drinking has become a problem. With the help of an alcohol addiction rehab program, you can take preventative measures to get it under control.
Why Do You Drink?
It’s essential for you to take a look at why you drink. Do you drink socially or when you hang out with friends or family? Do you drink to cope with conflicting feelings or to avoid stressful situations?
Drinking socially isn’t a problem itself. However, it can become a problem when you don’t know how to limit yourself or feel like you can’t. If you often find that you drink more than you intended to in a given time period, you might struggle with alcohol addiction.
Drinking to cover up a problem is never a good idea because you don’t deal with the core issue. You might continue to drink to make the problem go away. Eventually, you come to depend on alcohol to function normally.
What is Alcoholism?
Alcohol use disorder (AUD) has different stages, with alcoholism being the most severe. You can have alcohol use disorder without being an alcoholic, but that does not mean that your excessive drinking is an easy problem to solve. There are several criteria laid out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The DSM’s current version, known as DSM-5, has 11 criteria for evaluating the severity of someone’s alcohol dependency. If 2 of the 11 are met during a 12 month period, then that person is considered to have AUD. The more of them you can check off as having, the more severe your drinking problem is.
5 Signs of Alcohol Addiction
1. Drinking Alcohol for the Wrong Reasons
Most people drink socially to enhance positive feelings and emotions when among friends. However, you are putting yourself in a difficult position by drinking when your emotions have been a bit tangled due to life circumstances or depression. You are not drinking to have fun; you are drinking to mask your pain. This is a complex issue, and you will have to address any emotional or mental health issues when you seek treatment.
2. Binge Drinking
Binge drinking is drinking an excessive amount in a short time frame. Most binge drinkers don’t drink every day, but when they do, they drink a lot. For men, more than five drinks in two hours are considered binge drinking. For women, it is four drinks in two hours. This may be considered problem drinking rather than binge drinking if it is a young person drinking in their late teens or early twenties when many young people often indulge in this type of behavior.
3. Hiding Your Drinking
Has your drinking got to the point where you don’t want anyone to see you like this? You begin to drink alone at home or find a bar out of the way where no one will recognize you. Do you lie about how much you are drinking? Do you dispose of the empty cans and bottles so no one will see them? These are clear signs of too much drinking becoming a health issue.
4. Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Arise
Alcohol can have a devastating effect on the body and mind. If you are experiencing nausea, vomiting, headaches, or anxiety, these may be signs of alcohol dependency. The most serious of these symptoms is delirium tremens, which causes changes in the mind and the nervous system, and is a product of long-term alcohol abuse.
5. Drinking When You Had Planned Not To
Repeatedly drinking on occasions when you promised yourself or someone else that you would abstain is a clear sign that you cannot manage your drinking problem. This is the pattern of behavior that will only lead to worse outcomes.
Alcohol Addiction Treatment
By entering an alcohol addiction treatment center, you have made the right choice by prioritizing your health and wellness. Getting sober is not easy and takes a lifelong commitment. But it is worth it to finally be free of the hold that your alcohol use disorder has on you. There are many treatment and therapy options available, and acknowledging any mental health disorders affecting you will be a big help in putting together a plan that can lead you to many more years of good health and happiness.
Reach Out to San Antonio Recovery Center Today
Alcohol addiction can be easy to hide at first. You may only drink at night and often on your own. But time will take a toll on your mind and body. You will try to hide the signs of addiction, but that only puts a bandage on a situation that needs more extensive and intensive care. At San Antonio Recovery Center, we combine a wide variety of therapeutic methods with a holistic approach that includes meditation and yoga. We can be reached online or at 866.957.7885. Reach out and take the first step on your journey to wellness and recovery.