It’s difficult to know when to seek help for alcohol use. Whether you are grabbing drinks with coworkers after work or celebrating with champagne, alcohol consumption is a societal norm in the United States. However, even casual alcohol use can lead to addiction.
To underscore how serious alcohol consumption use can be, in 2020, an average of 29 people died every day in accidents related to alcohol usage, and it’s the third leading cause of preventable death. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), between 2003 and 2012, an astounding 10,327 people died in traffic accidents involving drunk drivers in California.
Many families have been devastated by alcoholism, either directly — by being hurt when loved ones can’t stop drinking — or indirectly — following fatal accidents. And while it’s difficult to know whether you’re simply drinking socially or whether alcohol is causing serious problems in your life, the first step is to recognize the signs of alcohol addiction and to understand the treatment options that are out there.
You think you have your drinking under control. But friends and family members are starting to confront you about your drinking, and you’re wondering if it’s time to get help. It’s important to understand the signs of alcohol addiction — and its consequences — to know when treatment is warranted.
Here are the signs of addiction to watch for:
- Drinking alone often or throughout the day
- Binge drinking (more than four drinks per a two-hour period for women; five during the same period for men)
- Inability to keep a job or attend school
- Arguing with loved ones over alcohol usage
- Withdrawing from loved ones
- Alternating between drinking and being hungover
- Legal troubles related to alcohol
- Lying about how much you drink
These signs are concerning — and it’s important to mention that alcohol addiction can have long-term effects on your health and relationships. If you spend more time drinking than attending special events or enjoying time with your family and friends, it’s time to get your life back on track.
If you or a loved one are struggling with alcohol addiction, it’s better to start treatment sooner rather than later. Our experienced clinicians, many who are in recovery themselves, can help you put your alcohol addiction in your past to help you avoid health risks, costs to your career and damage to your relationships. If you’re ready to change, we’re ready to partner with you to help you find life-long sobriety.