Millions of Americans suffer from alcoholism, but it can be hard at times to spot alcohol abuse signs. People who suffer from the disorder tend to minimize its consequences and find it difficult to seek help. Here are some things to look out for if you suspect your loved one is dealing with addiction and needs alcohol recovery services.
Alcoholics Hide or Lie About Intake
Alcohol is pretty common at most public venues. In fact, many sporting events and entertainment venues have alcohol-related sponsors. Television, movies and social media use it to advertise or include as a regular part of American culture. So, how do substance abuse and alcoholism work? Since drinking is such a widely accepted social norm, people who struggle with alcohol use often feel shame about it. Consequently, they may lie to their family and friends about how much alcohol they actually consume. They often disguise liquor in a non-alcoholic beverage, such as adding scotch to their coffee or putting vodka in a water bottle. Alcoholics typically have a hidden supply in closets, drawers, or car trunks.
It can be easier to recognize signs of an alcoholic if you know what alcohol does to your body. Over time, people who drink alcohol regularly build up a tolerance. The more your loved one drinks, the better they will become at handling the intoxicating effects of alcohol. A loved one who drinks a large amount of alcohol without becoming noticeably drunk may be struggling with a substance use problem. If it takes more than a few drinks or large quantities of alcohol before you begin to see the effects, your loved one by be struggling with alcoholism. They may not believe that they have an addiction, but that is one of three common myths about alcoholism.
Extreme Mood Swings
Drinking too much interferes with the production of brain chemicals that are essential for mental health. Alcoholics are often energetic and lively one minute and moody and irritable the next. Also, they may exhibit behavior that is out of character for them. An individual who is usually reserved may become loud and boisterous, or an individual who is usually calm may easily get agitated or angry. You may notice changes in your loved one’s demeanor if they are drinking more than usual.
Alcohol impairs a person’s ability to make good decisions. People who drink too much start engaging in risky behaviors that they would otherwise avoid, such as driving while intoxicated. Your loved one may need alcohol recovery services if they are making choices that put themselves or others at risk. Learning more about what alcohol does to your body can help you recognize signs of an alcoholic.
If Signs Point to Alcoholism
Recognizing the behaviors of an alcoholic is not always easy. In fact, it is another common myth about alcoholismcommon myth about alcoholism. If your loved one is exhibiting one or more of these glaring signs, however, it may be time to have a conversation. There are ways you can help your loved one get treatment. Learning more about alcohol addiction is the first place to start, followed by honesty and support.