7 Signs You May Have A Drinking Problem
December 7, 2019 , Agape Treatment Center
One of the most common questions alcoholics are asked in sobriety is “How did you know you had a drinking problem?” It would be fair to say that many alcoholics ask themselves this question even before they make the decision to get sober. Most alcoholics aren’t ready to take an honest look at their relationship with alcohol. In fact, many of these individuals will list all of the reasons they couldn’t possibly have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol as they continue to justify their drinking. If you are reading this, you may be wondering if you have a problem with alcohol. Here are a few signs that you may have a drinking problem.
You Find Yourself Contemplating if You Have a Drinking Problem
Do you find yourself contemplating whether your drinking is problematic? Do you constantly find yourself surrounded by other people that drink the way that you do? If so, you may have a drinking problem. You may justify your blackouts, nasty hangovers, and other unacceptable consequences by convincing yourself “these things happen to everyone.” This simply is not true. It is always a good idea to look deeper into your relationship with alcohol. Has your drinking progressed? Have you noticed alcohol-related consequences arising more frequently? People who do not struggle with alcohol, generally do not have these kinds of thoughts.
You Frequently Find Yourself Hiding or Lying About Your Drinking
Denial is the most common reaction with people struggling with their drinking, for both problem drinkers and alcoholics. No matter which category you fall into, if you have a drinking problem you may find yourself drinking secretively or lying about how much you drink. Most people adopt these behaviors to minimize their drinking. This may be a difficult sign to spot for anyone but you to notice, but it’s important you take an honest look at whether or not you are hiding or lying about your drinking.
You are Drinking to Relax and/or Feel Better
Society is constantly advertising the ever so popular “wine down” time or the casual “it’s 5 o’clock somewhere” mantra. Culturally, the idea of having a drink to ease the stressors of the day seems totally normal. Perhaps it is, for the normal drinker. For the alcoholic, this idea is stretched to the extremes. Almost all alcoholics abuse alcohol for emotional reasons. Whether it is stress, depression, anxiety, or the remnants of trauma, using alcohol to reach oblivion is a risky habit. The “relief” provided by the alcohol is temporary and generally makes matters worse long-term. If you find yourself drinking in excess when you are experiencing unpleasant feelings, this may be a major sign that you are using alcohol as a crutch.
You Find Yourself Drinking in Risky or Dangerous Situations
Do you begin drinking upon awakening, before work? If you are drinking before you know you have to drive somewhere, you may have a problem with alcohol. If you continue drinking against your doctor’s orders when you’re on medication – this could be a sign of problem drinking. Even if you haven’t suffered any severe consequences yet, every time you drink in these situations you are running the risk of serious consequences. Drinking in these dangerous and risky situations strongly implies that alcohol is the main priority in your life.
You Begin Neglecting Your Responsibilities as a Direct Result of Your Drinking
If your performance at school, work, or household responsibilities are suffering as a direct result of your drinking, it might be time for you to consider your relationship with alcohol. More often than not, an alcoholic will revolve their entire day around acquiring and consuming his/her next drink. Naturally, this will interfere with commitments, relationships, and responsibilities. When drinking alcohol becomes the priority over day-to-day life, there is a major problem with your drinking. Neglecting responsibilities for the sake of alcohol is a major sign that you may be an alcoholic.
You Have Developed a Tolerance or An Inability to Stop Drinking Alcohol
Do you ever find yourself drinking before and after a social situation or party? Chronic drinking patterns often develop as a direct result of you trying to alter your reality or self-medicate in order to feel happy or to escape unwanted emotions. Over time, you will begin to develop a tolerance to alcohol and may notice that you require copious amounts in more frequent intervals to achieve the same desired effect. Once you cross over from light or moderate drinking to heavy or binge drinking, you are transitioning from alcohol use to an alcohol use disorder. Once this process begins to transpire, you are developing a physical and/or psychological dependence on alcohol. If you find yourself physically dependent on alcohol and you are unable to stop drinking due to severe withdrawal symptoms you need to consider seeking out professional substance abuse treatment.
You are Experiencing Withdrawal Symptoms or Unexplainable Injuries
Alcohol withdrawal will occur once you have developed a tolerance and you suddenly stop drinking. Withdrawal symptoms are a sure sign that you are drinking too much.
Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal may include:
- Anxiety or nervousness
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid heartbeat
A severe form of alcohol withdrawal, delirium tremens (DT’s) may cause
- Severe confusion
If you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms (severe or mild) when you try to stop drinking, you may have a problem with drinking and should seek professional help from an alcohol rehab program. Injuries that are inexplainable may also be an indication of a problem. Blackouts and falls commonly occur when you are binge drinking. Falls, burns, car accidents and other traumatic injuries can also occur when an individual has been drinking too much.
If you or a loved one is in need of alcohol rehab, don’t wait any longer. Recovery is possible, and at Agape Treatment Center our experienced staff has all the tools you need to achieve sobriety. We will be with you every step of the way as you embark on a journey to freedom from alcohol.
Agape Treatment Center for substance abuse embraces a universal, unconditional love that transcends, that serves regardless of circumstances. We provide individuals all over the country with the opportunity to achieve the gift of lasting sobriety.