Drinking Habits that Lead to Alcoholism
Alcohol is highly addictive and, because it is legal for consumption, it is one of the most widely abused substances in the country. Almost everyone in America either knows someone who is addicted to alcohol or has suffered from an alcohol use disorder him or herself. While drinking socially is a common occurrence throughout the country, certain habits can lead to long term consequences including alcoholism. If you’re wondering whether your drinking habits are safe or if you may be at risk of becoming an alcoholic, consider these habits that may be putting your life at risk:
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, irresponsible drinking is not only risky, it can lead to an increased tolerance and a greater risk of alcohol addiction. Drinking more than a few drinks per day, on any given day, is irresponsible. Furthermore, the CDC recommends that you take precaution not to drink more than 8 drinks in any given week. Men who drink more than a couple drinks a day, or who consume more than 15 total drinks in a week are considered heavy drinkers; for women, this number is reduced to 8 drinks per week total.
Most commonly referred to as binge drinking, excessive drinking can be devastating both to your health and to your ability to control yourself when alcohol is around. Consuming large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time puts you at further risk of a number of considerably side effects including:
Denying that You Have a Problem
Have your friends or family members questioned your drinking habits? If you deny that you may have a drinking problem, even if you have been in trouble or suffered consequences as a result of your drinking, you may already have a drinking problem. You may have already crossed the line in which you no longer “drink for fun” and now you just drink because you feel like you “need to drink to have fun.” This is a sign of alcoholism; pay close attention as you may need to seek further help.
Drinking to Feel Better
If you feel hungover following a night of drinking, do you drink to get rid of the headache? Drinking to relieve a hangover or to feel better are signs that your drinking habits may be leading to something more. Alcoholism often begins with a mere desire to “feel better” after a long night of drinking. In time, the number of drinking nights increases as do the number of days following those nights in which you feel the need to drink—this is a sign of alcoholism.