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Am I An Alcoholic? Key Signs To Watch For

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We joke from time to time, am I an alcoholic? But in a recent study done by JAMA Psychiatry, one in eight adults is considered an alcoholic. So what constitutes alcohol use disorder? It is characterized by a person’s loss of control over alcohol intake, compulsive alcohol use, and a negative emotional state when not using it. A more serious level is considered alcoholism.

If not treated, alcoholism can last a lifetime. If you’re wondering if alcohol is a problem, here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • When drinking, do you typically avoid friends or family?
  • Have you ever been unable to remember part of an evening after drinking?
  • If socializing, do you often drink more than others and/or finish other people’s drinks?
  • Do you feel guilty about your drinking?
  • Have close friends or family members expressed concern about your drinking habits?
  • Has your work or interpersonal relationships been negatively affected by your drinking?
  • Have you ever been pulled over and/or arrested due to drinking?

Signs of Alcoholism

When you’re alcoholic, your body becomes addicted to it and starts to change. Signs of alcoholism include:

  • Nausea
  • Self-destructive behavior
  • Blackouts
  • Anxiety
  • Guilt
  • Vomiting
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Aggression
  • Loneliness

You may experience all of these or none of them depending on how your body processes alcohol. Another sign to look for alcoholism is if you shake or become dizzy from a lack of alcohol intake. This is usual for someone who is going through withdrawal. Moderate drinking can be healthy, but exceeding more than 14 drinks per week for men and 7 per week for women, may put you at risk of alcohol use disorder.

Are You a Functioning Alcoholic?

Some of these behaviors may not apply to you, but do you need a few drinks to get through the day? Even if you don’t get drunk, does it feel better to be consistently buzzed? A functioning alcoholic is harder to identify because of how “normal” everything seems. But alcohol still negatively affects your body.

If you’re consuming more than 3-4 drinks a day, but it doesn’t affect your work or relationships, you may be denying alcohol abuse. Regardless of your outward appearance, alcohol is still damaging your liver and brain.

 

What Does Alcohol Do To Your Body Over Time

Addiction to alcohol means your body craves and needs it to function. This is why when you quit consuming alcohol, your body reacts to the detox with some intense side effects. These can include tremors, mood swings, hallucinations, increased blood pressure, and seizures. It is best to seek the help of a professional who can monitor your health and help you from relapsing.

 

Identifying your alcoholism is the first step. If you believe you may have an addiction to alcohol, contact us today so we can set up a plan that is best suited to you and your journey towards recovery. Our goal is to help you achieve lasting sobriety so you can live your life to its full potential.