How to Know if You Have a Drinking Problem
Whether you’re enjoying dinner with friends or attending a party, you’ll likely see alcoholic beverages sprinkled throughout the room. Drinking is a ubiquitous social activity and an integral part of American culture. It helps people feel more at ease when interacting with others, and it lowers their inhibitions so they can let loose and have a good time. Because of this, drinking is viewed as a socially acceptable activity in many different types of situations.
When done in moderation, there’s nothing wrong with enjoying drinks with others. However, some people drink much more than intended and are unable to control their dangerous habit. This is a slippery slope that can lead to a full-blown alcohol addiction.
Because it isn’t always easy to tell if you have a drinking problem, it’s important to be aware of the warning signs of alcoholism. Here’s how you can tell if your drinking habit has become a serious problem and whether it’s time to seek treatment.
Alcohol Addiction Red Flags
Many people who struggle with alcoholism fail to recognize that they have a problem. This can be for any number of reasons, such as shame, denial or fear. It’s also worth noting that addiction is experienced differently by different types of people. Everyone has a unique background, personality, genetic makeup and family history that can influence the way they are impacted by alcoholism.
That said, there are several red flags that point to a deep-seated drinking problem. Here are some of the most common warning signs:
Failure to Set Limits
People who don’t struggle with alcoholism may occasionally have an extra drink or two. However, if you find yourself routinely drinking to the point where your body can’t physically stand it anymore, this is a more severe problem. Those with alcohol addiction often fail to recognize when it’s time to stop, which can lead to serious side effects like blackouts, hallucinations, stomach distress, liver damage and malnutrition.
People who drink in moderation know how to separate drinking from their other day-to-day responsibilities. Those with alcoholism, on the other hand, have serious trouble keeping these two worlds separate. They often prioritize drinking over other pressing tasks, such as meeting deadlines and showing up for appointments. This is a result of a lack of self-control, which can damage one’s relationships, career and personal life in a number of ways.
Excessive Preoccupation With Drinking
If the majority of your thoughts are centered on drinking, this is a common sign that you’re struggling with alcohol addiction. Alcoholism is typically characterized by excessive preoccupation with drinking, whether you’re constantly thinking about when you’ll get your next drink or figuring out ways to obtain more alcohol. This endless cycle of thoughts can prevent you from focusing on any given task or fulfilling your daily responsibilities.
Poor Decision Making
Once alcoholism has reached a certain degree, it begins to hamper a person’s decision making skills. They may find themselves in dangerous or even life-threatening situations, such as getting behind the wheel while intoxicated or operating heavy machinery after drinking. This is one of the most prominent signs of alcohol addiction, as it signifies an inability to monitor and control one’s actions. Not only is the addict putting themselves in danger, but they’re also putting the lives of others in jeopardy.
When you drink copious amounts of alcohol, you begin to develop a higher tolerance for the substance. This means that the amount of alcohol you used to drink no longer has the same effect on you. As a result, you may find yourself drinking much more than usual to achieve the desired effect. This is a toxic habit that can quickly lead to a dangerously high dependence on alcohol.
How We Can Help
At Topsail Addiction Treatment, we offer top-tier alcohol addiction treatment to residents of Massachusetts. We recognize that no two addictions are exactly alike, which is why we take the time to get to know you better so we can design a treatment plan that suits your specific needs. No matter where you are on the path toward recovery, our team of caring and dedicated professionals can give you the tools you need to overcome your addiction and regain control of your life.
We offer three different types of outpatient services at our Andover facility: partial hospitalization programs (PHP), intensive outpatient programs (IOP) and outpatient programs (OP). Our services are custom-tailored to ensure that your treatment plan fosters your personal journey toward recovery. Regardless of the type of treatment program you choose, we strive to empower each of our patients to conquer their addictions and find a greater sense of joy and purpose in their daily lives.
Recognize and Defeat Your Drinking Problem
If you notice any of these red flags in yourself or a loved one, it’s crucial to reach out and find the support you need. Our experts will get to the root of your alcohol abuse and work closely with you to help you rise above it once and for all.
To learn more about our treatment options, contact Topsail today.
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