Cultures around the world accept social drinking. This acceptance, however, could be why people overlook the signs of alcohol use disorder. Even when people wonder, “Am I an alcoholic?” they may rationalize or deny that they have a problem. Learning the signs of alcohol use disorder might help you decide to get treatment.
Am I an Alcoholic?
The American Psychiatric Association (APA) lists 11 symptoms of alcohol use disorder for diagnostic purposes. Having two or three of the symptoms is a mild problem, and having four or five is a moderate problem. Having six or more symptoms signals a severe condition.
However, alcohol use disorder can have warnings signs that aren’t on the APA list. In either case, here are some signs and symptoms that indicate that you need help.
Being Unable to Quit
If you wonder, “Am I an alcoholic?”, try to stop drinking. It’s a definite sign that you have a problem if you can’t stop despite your best efforts.
If drunkenness is your goal, how many drinks does it take to reach that point? Is that more than your body used to need? If it is, then you may have developed a tolerance to alcohol. Tolerance means that you need more alcohol than before to achieve intoxication, which is a beginning stage of alcoholism.
Temporary Blackouts After a Binge
If you can’t stop drinking until there’s no more alcohol left or until you blackout, you definitely have a problem. You may even still want alcohol or continue drinking when you snap out of your blackout. Being unable to control how much you drink is a warning sign of alcohol use disorder.
Your World Revolves Around Alcohol
Alcohol use disorder controls the mind and body. If you only think about alcohol, you probably spend too much time and energy getting, drinking and recovering from it. You may also put yourself into debt and only prefer social situations that involve drinking.
Since alcohol is at the forefront of your mind, your obligations at home likely aren’t a priority for you. That can cause serious problems in your relationships. Other effects of alcohol use disorder that ruin relationships include aggressive or violent behavior, lying about drinking, and isolation. Legal issues can make these problems worse.
Drop in School or Work Performance
When alcohol occupies too much of your time and energy, your performance in school or work will decline. You may have failing grades, problems meeting deadlines or completely stop going.
The presence of withdrawal is a dead giveaway for alcohol addiction. These withdrawal symptoms arise when you go too long without drinking. Some examples include headaches, tremors, fatigue, irritation, anxiety and depression. You could even drink in the morning to curb the symptoms until you can drink more in the evening.
Alcohol Treatment Can Help You
Alcohol use disorder is a serious problem that affects women in different ways than men. That’s why Soledad House offers treatment that caters specifically to women’s needs. Young women who need help will find an array of services at our San Diego rehab facility, including:
- One-on-one Therapy
- Group Therapy
- Experiential Therapy
- 12-Step Meetings
- Family Therapy
- Relapse Prevention Education
Don’t let alcohol put you or your family through hardship. Get help if you think that you have a problem. Reach out to us now at 866-314-3222.