Alcohol use is pervasive across much of American culture. The legality and social acceptance of alcohol mean it is difficult to determine when alcohol is being abused or when someone may be struggling with alcohol addiction. Nonetheless, the signs of alcoholism can be identified if you know what to look for. Common behavioral and physical signs often accompany alcoholism. More severe addictions are sometimes easier to identify. But even minor alcohol issues can be nipped in the bud by knowing alcoholism symptoms.
Common Alcohol Addiction Symptoms
Abusing alcohol often causes a range of physical symptoms. It can also create mental health challenges. Simply using alcohol impedes cognition and coordination, slurs speech, and impairs judgment. That’s the baseline whether or not the drinking becomes excessive or repetitive. However, regular users may develop a mental health disorder, struggle with mood swings, have anger issues, or experience sleep troubles.
Alcoholism symptoms also appear during withdrawal. Most people associate withdrawal symptoms with completely quitting a substance. But with alcohol, withdrawal symptoms can kick in just hours after a person’s last drink in the case of severe alcoholism. Typical alcohol addiction symptoms that appear during withdrawal include:
In cases of prolonged alcohol abuse, withdrawal may even involve hallucinations and delirium tremens.
5 Signs of Alcoholism
Alcohol abuse leaves its mark. It may be a type of drug use that is easier to find or disguise. Particularly because it is readily available and societally accepted. Yet the signs of alcohol addiction are not so hard to identify. Look for these five signs of alcoholism if you are concerned about drinking behavior in yourself or a loved one.
1. Regular Blackouts
Blackouts occur during bouts of excessive drinking because of too much alcohol in the bloodstream. Experiencing blackouts from drinking on a regular basis is a clear indicator that behavior has escalated beyond what is normal or safe.
2. Lack of Control Related to Alcohol
Many people use alcohol with good intentions. They start with just one drink to unwind after work or when out with friends. One sign of alcoholism is when someone stops being able to control their drinking. They may begin an evening thinking they’ll have just one drink, and before they know it, they have had five drinks. Failing to control alcohol usage does not indicate a personality defect, nor should it cause loved ones to play the blame game. Nonetheless, it is a sign of alcohol addiction that calls for intervention.
3. Work or Legal Issues
Drinking behavior often impacts every aspect of a person’s life. Alcoholism symptoms may carry into the day after a binge, making it hard to work. Calling in sick or putting in poor performance at work may become the norm for someone struggling with alcohol abuse. Moreover, the worse someone’s alcohol abuse is, the more likely they will run into trouble with the law. The most common example, and the most dangerous, is driving under the influence.
4. Physical Changes
Alcohol use over time typically results in physical changes. It can cause weight loss or bloating. It also disrupts sleep, leaving people tired more often than not. Shaking and sweating can also become a daily thing in someone who uses heavily.
5. Withdrawal Symptoms
Experiencing withdrawal symptoms between instances of drinking is another key sign of alcoholism. This may even contribute to someone’s lack of control, as they may come to believe the only way to feel good is to use alcohol. Instead, withdrawal symptoms can and should be a wake-up call that treatment is necessary.
Let Northpoint Nebraska Help You or a Loved One Today
Are you looking for alcohol addiction treatment in Nebraska? Reach out to 402.698.3475 to get you or your loved one the help you deserve.