There are plenty of people with normal, responsible drinking habits. Not every person who drinks is an alcoholic; far from it! But if you are worried that your or someone you know may have a drinking problem, here are some of the signs of alcoholism.
Alcohol Is Making You Miss Out On Life
Being hungover or constantly worrying about having access to alcohol is exhausting and anxiety-inducing. If alcohol is preventing you from doing regular activities, such as going to work, school, or even out with friends, then you may have a drinking problem. Having a hangover once in a while does not make you an alcoholic, but having several hangovers per week is cause for concern. Likewise, carrying alcohol with you at all times or having a plan in place to always have access to alcohol is also symptomatic of an alcohol problem.
Occasionally, even healthy, social drinkers will go too far in a night of drinking and blackout. This is dangerous and risky for anyone, not least of all because you can’t remember what happened to you. If you find yourself blacking out on a regular basis or frequently you may have a drinking problem.
Using Alcohol To Ease Anxiety
Many refer to alcohol as “social lubricant,” and it is true that alcohol can loosen you up and make social situations more comfortable. But if you rely on alcohol and feel anxious without it, you could have a drinking problem.
You’re Embarrassed By What You Did When You Were Drinking
Have you ever heard of the “Sunday scaries”? The term refers to the feeling of dread and anxiety you might have the day after drinking. If you act in ways that embarrass you or get completely out of control when you drink to the point that you consistently have regrets about your behavior from the night before, you are probably abusing alcohol.
Others Express Concern
Do not get defensive if someone talks to you about a possible problem with alcohol. It is likely you have exhibited some of the warning signs and this person is genuinely concerned and looking out for your well-being. If someone close to you keeps asking if you should really have another drink, or if you should really be drinking in a situation, you may be abusing alcohol.
You Incorporate Alcohol Into Every Situation
Going to the movies, for a walk, or to the gym does not require alcohol to make it fun. If you find yourself always bringing along or buying alcohol to “spice up” every activity, this is cause for concern. Not every activity has to be a party, and you should have plenty of pastimes and hobbies that are still fun without alcohol.
You Have Tried To Control Your Drinking, But Can’t
If you have attempted to abstain or cut back on your drinking and failed, this is a sign of alcoholism. Feeling out of control is a warning that alcohol has taken over.