Alcohol use is prevalent throughout our society. In fact, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reported that in 2017 an astounding 86.3% of people who were 18 or older reported drinking alcohol at some point in their lifetime. Another 70.1% reported that they drank in the past year, while still another 55.9% reported that they drank in the past month. Those numbers are really telling.
SIGNS OF ALCOHOL ADDICTION
So when does drinking become a drinking problem? If you or a loved one are experiencing any of the following signs, there may be an alcohol dependence present.
- Increased quantity of alcohol or frequency of use
- A “high tolerance” for alcohol, or not usually having “hangover” symptoms
- Drinking at inappropriate times like first thing in the morning, at work or school
- Avoiding situations where there will not be any alcohol
- Distancing yourself from friends who do not drink as much as you do
- Isolating yourself loved ones
- Hiding alcohol or hiding the fact that you are drinking
- Dependence on alcohol to function in everyday life
- Increased lethargy, depression, emotional issues, mood swings
- New legal problems
- Professional problems or job loss
If alcohol consumption is leading to any of the symptoms mentioned above, there are treatment options that can help. If you spot any of these warning signs in yourself or someone that you know, contact BrightView today. 888-501-9865
EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL ADDICTION
Alcohol addiction has many side effects and can be a risk to both the individual with an alcohol use disorder, as well as the people around them. Not only can alcoholism affect family and other relationships on an emotional level, but it can also be dangerous if the person is drinking and driving. The CDC reports that every day in the United States there are 29 fatalities due to impaired driving. This equates to one life lost every 50 minutes.
There are also plenty of physical effects related to alcohol abuse. Below we’ve listed just some of the short-term and long-term health effects associated with the disease.
- Poor decision making
- Lack of focus
- Loss of coordination
- Compromised vision perception
- Mood swings
- Reduced core body temperature
- Raised blood pressure
- Diminished gray matter and white matter in the brain
- Memory loss
- Alcoholic hepatitis
- Liver fibrosis
- Steatosis (also known as fatty liver)
- Increased risk for cancer of the throat, mouth, larynx, breast, liver, colon, or esophagus
- High blood pressure
- Irregular heartbeat
TREATMENTS FOR ALCOHOL ADDICTION
At BrightView, we take a comprehensive approach for treating all substance abuse, whether it be alcohol or drug addiction. This is not a “rehab” center. BrightView’s intensive outpatient programs focus on creating long-term success for our patients in the treatment of the disease of addiction.
We use medication assisted treatment or MAT, which can include naltrexone for patients who are struggling with alcohol addiction. Using medications, when combined with individual therapy and support groups is proven to have lasting effects when treating substance abuse.
If you or a loved one need help beating the disease of alcoholism, BrightView can help. Reach out to our caring team 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 888-501-9865