If you ask yourself whether you have a problem with alcohol, chances are you might have one. Wondering if your drinking is normal or healthy is a reliable indicator of a suspecting a problem. Don’t ignore these feeling. On the contrary, dig deeper and be honest with yourself. Use our guide to investigating different areas of your life in search of warning signs.
What are warning signs that you need rehab?
Warning signs that rehab may be necessary include:
- Driving while drunk or causing accidents while driving under the influence of alcohol.
- Drinking alcohol to feel relaxed or to feel relieved from stress.
- Health issues related to alcohol consumption.
- Financial problems because of buying alcohols.
What are the signs of alcoholism that call for rehab?
The signs of alcoholism that call for rehab include:
- Increased alcohol tolerance and needing to drink more to get drunk than before
- Uncontrolled consumption and numerous blackouts
- Withdrawal symptoms lasting for several days
Warning Signs In Your Everyday Life
Have You Been Drunk-Driving or Causing an Accident While Being Drunk?
If you are a frequent drinker, this might have happened to you at some point. We see this alarming behavior in movies, and it happens way too often in real life, too. In fact, it already is a sign of losing responsibility and putting yourself in danger.
You Drink Alcohol to Numb Uncomfortable Feelings
Do you usually have a drink to relax in the evening, or whenever you feel stressed? When you attend a party, is the first thing you do seeking drinks to get in the mood or overcome shyness? Would you rather miss the party rather than face it being sober or not drunk “enough”? If yes, that indicates that you might be self-medicating. That is a term used by mental health professionals and alcohol specialists to describe this pattern.
You Have Health Problems Caused by Alcohol Consumption
Did your doctor warn you about alcohol-related health issues? Did you dismiss it, because you are young and fit? Even if so, you should know, that alcohol alters your aging process. You will not see it immediately. But if you started drinking in your teens, you could expect problems to merge in a couple of years. Your intestines and your liver suffer the most damage. Women usually observe these signs in the late 20ties and men in their early 30ties.
You Have Financial Problems
Are you an admirer of fine liquor? Well, the good ones come at a price, especially if you treat yourself regularly. Or maybe you buy cheap beer, but you have ten drinks and attend parties every week? In either case, affording large amounts of alcohol can be wallet-straining. It is one thing to spend money on food because we need it to live. How do you compare buying alcohol to food? Could you imagine skipping it?
Warning Signs In Your Consumption
Increased Tolerance to Alcohol
Have you realized that you need more drinks to get drunk than before? The body of a regular long-term drinker learns to adapt and compensate for the toxic influences. That also means that you need more drinks to get drunk. And that, of course, causes more damage to your body. This increased tolerance to alcohol is a tangible sign that you drink and harm your body too much.
Uncontrolled Consumption and Blackouts
Did you ever decide to stop or decrease drinking for a while, but fail to honor your decision? That is not merely a sign of negligence. It could be a worrisome sign of lack of strong will to commit. It can lead to excessive drinking leading to blackouts. But failing to quit can also be a sign of alcoholism. That is a serious issue that needs to be addressed in rehab.
Do I need rehab if I am blacking out from drinking?
Yes, you need a rehab if you are blacking out from drinking. Blacking out is a sign that your drinking habit is very unhealthy. Also, excessive drinking of alcohol will increase your tolerance to alcohol, which will make it harder for you to stop drinking alcohol in the future.Social drinkers may drink a lot and get drunk regularly. But if they have no alcohol problems, they never experience blackouts.
We are not talking hangover, resulting after having too much to drink and usually fading the next day. Withdrawal symptoms appear when the body gets used to a chemical that now is missing. While a hangover fades after 24h and the body recovers, withdrawal symptoms worsen with time. They can last for a several days after the last drink, depending on the amount that had been last consumed.
A hangover can happen after any amount of alcohol consumption and is not necessarily alarming. But withdrawal symptoms are proof of having a problem with alcohol. They are a clear sign that you should consider rehab.
Mild withdrawal symptoms can be easily recognized:
- Nausea and vomiting
But in extreme cases, alcohol withdrawal can cause delirium tremens, a life-threatening condition. It can cause:
- Fever, confusion, and hallucinations
Warning Signs In Your Social Life
Your Behavior Becomes Dysfunctional
You feel the need to lie or cover up your drinking. Feeling ashamed, scared or guilty about any substance abuse or addiction often leads to lies. Well, this is a very clear indicator that you know, deep down, that you struggle with a problem.
Maybe you hurt someone or yourself. Do you often find bruises on your body after drinking? You could have become violent and gotten in physical altercations. Or you could have lost your motor skills and hit or fallen. These are signs that your drinking can be dangerous for yourself or those around you.
You have legal issues. There is more than drunk-driving. People can get violent or attempt risky activities because of their impaired intoxicated judgment. Did you get arrested for inappropriate behavior or crime while you were drunk? That should be a strong enough signal, that you don’t control your alcohol intake.
Others Express Concerned About Your Drinking
So your family member or your friend annoys you by expressing concerns about your drinking. Do you think they are picky and prone to judgment too easily? Most people would only bring up such a sensitive topic for a reason. Consider the possibility that they can be up to something. And maybe several independent people expressed their worries? In that case, chances are, they could have observed a real alcohol problem you face.
You Withdraw From Family, Friends, and From Activities
You isolate yourself from other people. Do you wait until you spouse, roommate or guests are leaving so that you can engage in drinking? Isolation is a common behavior for addicts because they feel ashamed and misunderstood. If you feel like you need privacy to drink, you might have reached a point where you need help.
You miss out on important social events. Do you have the energy to attend your friends’ wedding, a birthday or your brother’s game? Wouldn’t you rather stay at home and drink in peace and quiet? Observe your priorities: is it your social life or alcohol?
Your personal relationships decay. Did your neglect or violent behavior cause distrust and disappointment in your loved ones? That is a huge red flag and a clear sign that you need to go to rehab.
Warning Signs In Your Professional Life
You don’t have to be kicked out of school or losing your job to know that something is wrong in your life. That would have been all too obvious. But alarming signs can be more subtle.
Maybe you haven’t noticed because it happened gradually, but your achievements diminished. Maybe you started having problems with completing tasks that were not problematic before. Yes, drinking could be the culprit here. Alcohol decreased your potential in different ways:
- Your sleep is of less good quality
- You are less alert and concentrated during the day
- Your thinking ability is less sharp than it was before
Be honest: are you satisfied with how you manage your everyday life and your responsibilities? Did you repeatedly fail to meet commitments at work or school? Did you call in sick to deal with a hangover? These can indicate that you lost control of your alcohol use and are on the way to sabotaging your career.
Loss of Motivation
When drinking becomes your primary motivation, you can loose your previous incentives at work. You can forget or dismiss the reasons, why you wanted to get on your current career path in the first place. Maybe you blame your job not to be fulfilling. That may be. But what if you lost your drive because you give all priority to alcohol?