More than an estimated 15 million individuals struggle with an alcohol use disorder in the United States, and approximately 88,000 people die from alcohol each year. While these statistics are alarming, only a small percentage of individuals get the treatment they need to cope with and overcome alcohol addiction.
Struggling with an alcohol use disorder can be incredibly hard, and many people try to hide their alcoholism as long as possible. However, the sooner a person seeks help, the more likely he or she is to make a full recovery and prevent potentially harmful and even deadly consequences of alcohol abuse.
The following are eight signs that may indicate you need professional help for an alcohol use disorder. If you relate to these, you can call an Vertava Health’ treatment specialist to discuss your options and better understand your condition.
1. You Have Health Problems Caused By Alcohol Abuse
Alcohol abuse and addiction can significantly impact a person’s physical health. There are several conditions that can be directly caused by chronic heavy drinking, including liver damage, heart damage, anemia, various types of cancers, and brain and nervous system problems.
Alcohol abuse can also cause or worsen symptoms of mental health conditions like depression and anxiety. Other mental health disorders, like dementia, can be caused by alcohol abuse as well. If you are experiencing health problems as a direct result of alcohol abuse, it may be time to consider treatment.
2. You Experience Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms When Not Drinking
Experiencing symptoms of withdrawal when not drinking is a significant sign that you may be physically dependent on alcohol. Common withdrawal symptoms include nausea, shaky hands, vomiting, headache, insomnia, and sweating.
People who are severely addicted to alcohol may experience more dangerous symptoms, including delirium tremens (DTs). Symptoms DTs include fever, confusion, high blood pressure, and heavy sweating. If you believe you are experiencing DTs, it’s important to seek medical help immediately, as this condition can be fatal.
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3. You Have Injured Yourself Or Others While Intoxicated
Alcohol can lower inhibitions and make people more likely to participate in dangerous activities like drunk driving. This is especially true for individuals who drink heavily or who cannot control their alcohol intake. The more alcohol a person consumes, the more likely he or she is to get injured or injure others.
Multiple DUIs, injuries, or participating in other potentially dangerous situations may be a sign that you could benefit from alcohol abuse and addiction treatment.
4. Your Work Or School Performance Has Suffered As A Result Of Your Drinking
People who can control their drinking typically don’t experience issues with work, school, or other responsibilities as a result of alcohol consumption. However, individuals who have trouble controlling their drinking or who regularly abuse alcohol often find themselves calling in sick to work, missing school, or performing poorly. A person may even lose his or her job or get kicked out of school as a result of drinking.
5. You Regularly Lie About Or Hide Your Alcohol Consumption
Hiding or lying about one’s alcohol consumption is often a key indicator that the individual is struggling with alcohol abuse or addiction. A person may drink in private or consume alcohol before meeting up with friends. Individuals with an alcohol use disorder may also lie about how much alcohol they drink or even avoid social situations where their drinking will be noticeable.
If you find yourself lying about how much alcohol you drink or hiding your alcohol consumption, this may be an indication that you are struggling with an addiction to alcohol.
6. You Regularly Blackout From Drinking
A blackout occurs as a result of drinking more alcohol than the body can handle. When a person blacks out, he or she loses the ability to form short-term memories and is unable to recall periods of time. Blacking out can be incredibly dangerous and put individuals at a heightened risk for injury. Experiencing blackouts is often a sign that a person is abusing or addicted to alcohol.
7. You Experience Negative Consequences As A Result Of Your Alcohol Abuse
Alcohol abuse and addiction can increase a person’s risk of experiencing a variety of negative consequences. For example, a person may have problems with friends or family or even run into issues with the legal system as a result of his or her actions while intoxicated. The more negative consequences someone experiences as a result of alcohol abuse, the more likely he or she is to benefit from treatment.
8. You Have Tried To Limit Or Quit Drinking To No Avail
Many people who struggle with an alcohol use disorder have tried to limit or quit drinking on their own but are unable to do so. While this can be frustrating, it isn’t a sign of failure. Alcohol addiction is a disease and often requires professional help to manage and overcome. If you have tried and failed to quit drinking, it may be time to consider a formal alcohol addiction program.
Getting Help For Alcohol Addiction
If you find yourself relating to a few or many of the signs discussed above, you may benefit from an alcohol addiction rehab program. Seeking help for an alcohol use disorder can be scary, but it’s important to know that you’re not alone. Vertava Health has several treatment options available, and all of our programs are customized to the unique needs of each person who walks through our doors.
To learn more about the signs that may mean you need alcohol addiction rehab treatment, contact a treatment specialist today.