You may think you don’t exactly fit the stereotype of someone suffering from alcoholism. Perhaps you’ve never gotten a DUI or stolen money to buy alcohol. You can’t actually be a chronic alcoholic, right?
Alcohol use disorder takes numerous forms, and the stereotype does not always hold. So, how do you tell a few occasional drinks from full-blown alcohol addiction? Let’s take a look.
A chronic alcoholic is someone who drinks alcohol beyond their control and cannot stop on their own volition. This behavior is usually characterized by daily drinking and consuming increasing quantities of alcohol as the body becomes more tolerant to the alcohol, leading to cravings that are catered to, even when they shouldn’t.
However, the lines between a habitual drinker and an alcoholic can be blurry for some. Learn more on how to sign up for alcohol addiction treatment. Here are a few warning signs you should look out for if you have reason to believe you might have a drinking problem.
Signs of Chronic Alcoholism
1. Failure to Control Your Drinking
A common trait of people with a drinking problem is that they tend to make promises to themselves that they’ll cut back on their drinking or won’t drink as much when they do. But they rarely keep this promise and find themselves in situations where they end up consuming more than they had previously planned.
If you constantly find yourself in scenarios where you just can’t stop drinking until you are entirely intoxicated, you might have developed chronic alcoholism.
If you disguise how much you drink because you feel ashamed about the habit and don’t want anyone to find out you’re intoxicated, you might be suffering from alcohol use disorder.
People who drink regularly tend to go to great lengths to hide how much alcohol they’re actually consuming. For instance, a person may go out for a few drinks with their friends or colleagues but then go home and consume more of it in private. They may also sneak away from social settings to drink so others don’t realize how much they drink.
Some people can consume a lot of alcohol without experiencing any undesirable physical effects. For others, however, excessive drinking can take a significant toll on their bodies.
For example, they may gain or lose weight. Others experience severe withdrawal symptoms such as visible sweating, shaky hands, or insomnia. If you can see that your drinking has had an effect on your physical appearance, it might be time to seek professional alcohol addiction treatment.
Alcohol Addiction Treatment Is the Way to Go
Alcoholism is a disease that has a different effect on people. But despite the harm associated with excessive alcohol consumption, the effects are usually reversible with professional alcohol addiction treatment. However, this depends on how soon you realize you might be struggling with an alcohol use disorder.
Note that just because you’re a habitual drinker doesn’t mean that you might be dependent on alcohol. All the same, the warning signs listed should serve as an indicator of a developing problem.