For many people, it can be hard to know for sure when drinking alcohol becomes a problem. When you drink too much at one sitting or drink too often, it becomes alcohol abuse. The alcohol begins to impact your life negatively, interfering with work or school and ruining relationships. An alcoholic, despite the negative consequences, will continue to drink.
Plain and simple, alcohol is a drug. It usually doesn’t take long before someone who drinks regularly to become addicted to the alcohol drug. The addiction soon leads to dependency. When someone becomes dependent on alcohol, they become an alcoholic and have a constant urge to drink more alcohol.
There are several signs to look for to determine if you are an alcoholic. Some of these include drinking alone, being intoxicated often, making excuses for drinking, having blackouts, having a tolerance to alcohol, hiding alcohol, and missing work or school. There are many other signs and symptoms of being an alcoholic.
There are many factors that can increase your risk for alcoholism. Many scientists believe genetics play a role. This, of course, doesn’t mean you are doomed to become an alcoholic if someone else in your family is. Mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety, can also lead people to alcohol as they try to self-medicate. The availability of alcohol and stress levels are other factors.
It can take a while to become physically addicted to alcohol. Certain brain chemicals that are affected by chronic drinking are associated with pleasure, so your body will begin craving alcohol to feel good.
Many effective treatments for alcoholism are available. There are several factors that determine which treatment is best for an individual, such as the severity of the problem. When someone is physically dependent on alcohol, they will require detoxification to flush the alcohol out of their body. Medications are used to help with the withdrawal symptoms.
Psychotherapy has also been shown effective in treating the underlying issues that typically accompany alcohol problems. They can also help a patient to better understand their addiction and learn the triggers while also learning strategies for coping that are healthy.
There are some medications a doctor may prescribe for treating alcoholism. Some of these medications reduce your urge to drink, while others cause an adverse physical reaction when you do drink alcohol.
Counseling has been proven to be one of the best ways to help an alcoholic. This can be done one on one with a counselor, in family counseling, or in support groups.
If you are addicted to the alcohol drug, the first step is to seek help. There are serious complications with untreated alcohol abuse or dependency. You can contact us at Coastline Behavioral Health for assistance. You should also practice healthy habits. It is vital to take care of yourself by exercising, eating well, and getting enough sleep. This will help you cope with stress better as well. Surround yourself with people who are supportive. Avoid those who put you down and make you feel guilty. By following these steps, you can overcome your alcohol addiction and dependency for good.