What are the Signs of Alcoholism?

Watching a loved one consume alcohol to a dangerous extent may cause you to wonder if they are struggling with addiction or just problematic use of a substance. Either way, it is possible for them to get help. Clients who misuse alcohol through problematic drinking, or if it has evolved into alcoholism, can access addiction treatment specifically designed to support the individual. It is important to know the signs of alcoholism and to know when treatment may be needed.

At Impact IOP, our Louisville addiction treatment programming is designed to support clients who are continuing to live their life while making significant changes at home. The transition to sobriety isn’t easy, and we support our clients through individual counseling and group therapy to build a support system that is familiar with the triggers and stressors of this type of change.

We’re ready to make an impact on your life today.

Is Alcohol Addictive?

Alcohol is addictive and one of the most commonly abused substances. Though it does have restrictions, the ability to purchase alcohol legally makes it more widely available and lawfully available for consumption. As a result, individuals who misuse or abuse alcohol can develop an addiction to the substance through legal means of access.

When individuals consume alcohol, it lowers inhibitions and can produce a calm and relaxed feeling. Unfortunately, this effect on the body causes many people to abuse alcohol.

The most common ways to abuse alcohol include consuming it while underage, binge drinking or drinking an unsafe amount, and drinking alcohol while taking contraindicated substances. When individuals consistently misuse alcohol but can still stop drinking if it is brought to their attention, they are considered to have problematic drinking. However, if the person misses using alcohol and cannot stop, it becomes an addiction.

What are the Signs of Alcoholism?

Alcoholism or alcohol use disorders impact every aspect of a person’s life. Their physical well-being, social and emotional health, and relationships will be affected. And those who abuse alcohol will have problems at home, with their friends, and at work that is all directly related to substance abuse.

If an individual is an alcoholic, they will experience several physical symptoms directly related to alcohol use. Some alcoholics develop the shakes quote, which indicates that their substance use is out of control. The shakes occur when an individual starts to withdraw from alcohol. Those addicted to alcohol may also experience liver and kidney problems and have a higher chance of developing several types of cancer.

Alcohol use disorders also impact individuals’ social-emotional well-being. For example, people who use alcohol to cope with social anxiety will struggle to make connections and develop relationships without the aid of alcohol. This will affect relationships and can affect the workplace. 

Finally, alcoholics’ relationships will suffer. Because alcohol lowers inhibitions, it creates an imbalance and can cause drinkers to be less responsible and put themselves in a riskier situation that can lead to traumatic events and legal problems down the line.

Can Alcohol Cause Withdrawal?

Alcohol can cause withdrawal. Alcohol is one of the more difficult substances to withdraw from because of how it impacts the body. As a liquid that is absorbed into the system, alcohol slowly affects the digestive tract. Additionally, because it is a sedative, it slows down this process. Alcohol forces the liver and kidneys to process other toxins from the system and can cause severe damage.

When a person enters withdrawal from alcohol, there are several things to look out for. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome can cause seizures, depression, sleep disturbances, changes in appetite, and changes in overall mood. If a person suffers from severe alcohol withdrawal, seizures may occur within the first 48 to 72 hours following the individual’s last drink.

How to Find Outpatient Alcohol Addiction 

Treatment is available through Impact’s Louisville Intensive Outpatient Programs, which work with clients to develop a specific addiction treatment program that supports and nurtures their clients’ mental health. Focused on providing learning experiences for those struggling with addiction, Impact’s Kentucky outpatient program works to teach coping skills, self-management skills, and mindfulness techniques that allow clients to focus on improving their overall mental health while getting sober.
At Impact IOP, our trained professionals are ready to help you make the changes you want to see in your life today. Contact us today to see how our Louisville rehab center can help you!

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