Alcohol abuse is characterized by a problematic and harmful relationship with alcohol. Alcohol abuse can have serious negative effects on your relationships, career, and result in problems with the law like DUIs. Most people who are abusing alcohol are aware of the problems alcohol is causing them, but are unable to stop drinking. Many alcohol abusers would be greatly offended if they were labeled alcoholics, although they definitely qualify as such.
If you are concerned that you or someone you love may have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, then take a look at the following symptoms. If you exhibit three or more over the course of the last twelve months, then you are probably an alcoholic:
- inability to stop drinking, or regulate the amount you drink
- the need to increase the amount you drink to produce the desired effect
- symptoms of withdrawal when not drinking, including stomach ache, heavy sweating, nausea, unsteady hands, and high anxiety.
- spending a significant amount of time either drinking, or recovering from drinking.
- giving up hobbies you used to enjoy because they interfere with your drinking
- continuing to drink despite the problems it causes in your relationships, work, and health
Alcoholism is recognized by the medical community as a disease. It is not the result of a lack of willpower, poor character, or weakness. Individuals that suffer from alcoholism may exhibit strong character and willpower in other regards, but the total lack of it when it comes to their drinking. Similar to other chronic diseases, alcoholism has a fairly predictable, recognized pattern of behaviors, symptoms for diagnosing the disease, and is influenced by a combination of genes and circumstances.
How Much Drinking is Alcohol Abuse?
Alcohol plays a role in the lives of many individuals across the world, and is an important aspect of many cultural and family roles, and religious traditions. Alcohol is a social lubricant and an icebreaker in setting that me be anxiety provoking, like large gatherings, parties, and first dates. It makes interacting with friends and strangers easier, and calms the nerves. Those in the entertainment and marketing industries profess the central role drinking plays in their work, and how difficult and alien it would be to take clients to lunch without buying them a drink.
Because of its alcohol’s acceptance, it can be difficult to know if your drinking has crossed the line between occasional use and alcohol abuse. Although the amount different in different alcohol abusers, there are some general guidelines. We recommend talking to your doctor, or seeking some sort of treatment, if you are:
- a woman who drinks more than 3 alcoholic beverages in one sitting, or exceeds 7 drink during one week.
- a man who drinks more than 4 drinks during one sitting, or exceeds 14 drinks in one week.
Treatment for Alcohol Abuse
If you have recognized that your drinking is causing problems in your life, then intensive inpatient treatment is often the most appropriate course. California alcohol abuse Services provides their clients with comprehensive inpatient treatment for alcohol abuse. Northbound is a 12 Step based treatment program that uses a wide range of evidence-based treatment approaches. Treatment plans are customized for each individual client, and modified to provide help with any additional diagnosis, such as anxiety or depression.
In addition to intensive inpatient treatment, Northbound offers clients continued support through a number of extended care programs. These include gender-specific programs for either men or women, Christian programs focused on recovering through Christ, assistance for clients either working or attending school, and Alumni programs for recent graduates.
If someone you love is battling alcohol abuse and is looking for inpatient treatment, then Northbound Treatment Services can help. Contact a treatment professional today at (866) 538-4356.