People are drinking more alcohol than ever before—or at least, that’s one of the takeaways from a recent Popular Science article.
“Nearly every group of people in the United States is now drinking more than they did a decade ago,” says the article. “Sure, it’s only 11.2 percent more who are drinking at all, but it’s also 30 percent more who are now high-risk drinkers—the ones who are in peril of becoming dependent.”
It’s this last statement that’s most significant. With drinking increasingly commonplace, it’s more important than ever before to know what constitutes “normal” alcohol use, and what falls under the heading of alcohol addiction.
As the Popular Science article notes, the key distinction is dependence. It’s not really about staying below a certain number of drinks each week; it has more to do with how alcohol use impacts your physical, mental, financial, and relational health—and, how able you are to stop yourself from drinking to excess.
In other words, alcohol addiction is defined by certain behaviors—and according to most addiction care specialists, you may be an alcoholic if you have any two of the following behaviors:
- Experiencing times when you drink more than intended
- Wanting to cut down or stop drinking, but finding yourself unable to
- Spending a lot of time dealing with the after-effects of alcohol
- Wanting to drink so badly you can’t think of anything else
- Discovering that drinking has prevented you from handling family or work responsibilities
- Drinking even when it causes problems with family or friends
- Giving up or letting go of activities that used to be important to you, just to keep drinking
- Finding yourself in dangerous or risky situations due to drinking
- Drinking even when it causes you to feel depressed or anxious
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms as the effects of alcohol wear off
Again, if any two of these points describe your drinking habits, it likely means that you have developed an alcohol dependence—and the time to seek treatment is now. Talk with us more about alcohol recovery; contact Seacliff today.Talk with us more about alcohol recovery; contact Seacliff today.