Alcohol is a normal part of our culture, and you can find it everywhere-in television shows, at nearly every restaurant, and even at your office holiday party. Many adults regularly enjoy a glass of wine with dinner or beer at a football game, and some even get drunk on occasion. In a culture that is so accepting of alcohol, how do you
know if you’ve crossed a line into alcohol addiction? How far is too far?
Signs of alcohol addiction
After all, the first step in seeking help is admitting you have a problem, but in order to do that, you need to be able to recognize the signs of alcohol addiction.
Addiction occurs when you are physically or psychologically dependent on alcohol to get through life. No one wakes up who has never had a drink to
suddenly find themselves dependent on alcohol. There is a road to alcohol
addiction, and one of the first signs that you’re on that dangerous road is alcohol abuse.
What is alcohol abuse?
If you abuse alcohol, you may not be physically or psychologically dependent on it, but you regularly make decisions to drink when it is wise to abstain.
For example, you may drink to the point that it causes problems at work or school. You may drink when it is unsafe to do so, like before driving a
car. You may regularly drink to the point of blacking out or drink to the
point of harming yourself or others. You may continue to drink even when it makes health problems you have worse. These and other signs of alcohol
abuse can be found on WebMD.
What are the signs of alcohol addiction?
Over time, alcohol abuse can blossom into alcohol addiction. At this stage, you are physically or psychologically dependent on alcohol to function.
WebMD lists many helpful warning signs of this dependence as well, some of which are included below:
- You drink at unusual times, such as early in the morning or when you are alone.
- You are frequently drunk for long periods of time.
- You feel guilty after drinking, but still cannot quit or control how much you drink.
- You need to drink more now than you used to in order to achieve the
- When you attempt to quit, you experience withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, anxiety, and sweating.
- You make excuses for your drinking or go out of your way to hide it
from friends and family who express concern.
- You exhibit physical symptoms of addiction, such as weight loss, gastritis, or redness in your nose and cheeks.
- In social situations where friends enjoy a few drinks, you cannot stop when others do and always drink to the point of being drunk.
What do I do if I’m addicted to alcohol?
If you are addicted to alcohol, you may need to undergo detox before you begin your full treatment plan. Hawaiian Island Recovery offers medically supervised detoxification to make this experience as smooth and comfortable as possible.
Once you are weaned you off of physical dependence in detox, you’ll need to continue therapy to address the underlying factors that led you to abuse alcohol in the first place. Although this process may sound scary, many of our residents are surprised to find that they actually have fun during their stay with us! When they graduate from our program, they are no longer dependent on or abusing alcohol.