A person that is addicted to alcohol is colloquially known as an alcoholic. Alcohol addiction, also known as alcoholism or alcohol use disorder (AUD), is listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) as a chronic brain disorder. It is a medical condition that is characterized by “an impaired ability to stop or control alcohol use despite adverse social, occupational, or health consequences.” According to the Mayo Clinic the three main symptoms of alcoholism include:
- Being preoccupied with alcohol.
- Continuing to use alcohol even when it causes problems.
- Having to drink more to get the same effect, and/ or having withdrawal symptoms when you rapidly decrease or stop drinking.
The signs and symptoms exhibited by an individual struggling with alcohol addiction will be informed by several contributing factors (e.g., the amount of alcohol consumed, how quickly the alcohol is consumed, whether the individual mixes alcohol with other substances, one’s overall heath, etc.). Additional signs and symptoms that may be indicative of alcoholism may include, but are not limited to, any combination of the following examples, provided by Penn Medicine:
- Memory impairment.
- Slurred speech.
- Aggressive behaviors.
- Poor coordination.
- Dangerous and risky behaviors.
- Increased tolerance to alcohol.
- Liver damage.
- Stomach aches.
- Impaired judgment.
- Lack of inhabitations.
Every individual is different and has the propensity to exhibit a somewhat unique set of signs and symptoms when it comes to alcohol addiction. The signs and symptoms of alcohol addiction may not be immediately evident, which can make them slightly more difficult to notice. Individuals that are addicted to alcohol will prioritize satisfying alcohol cravings above all else, which can lead to severe short- and long-term physiological consequences.
For Information and Support
If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one regarding substance abuse and/ or addiction, we recommend reaching out for help as soon as possible. If left untreated, substance abuse can result in long lasting and potentially life-threatening consequences. Keep in mind: you are not alone! There is an entire network of professionals that are available to help and support you and your loved one throughout the recovery process. The earlier you seek support, the sooner your loved one can return to a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions regarding our specific program at Haven House Addiction Treatment and/ or general substance abuse and/ or addiction treatment related information. Our highly trained staff is readily available to discuss how we might best be able to help you and your loved one. We can be reached by phone at 424-258-6792. You are also welcomed to contact anytime us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org