Whether we like to admit it or not, social drinking is the fabric that makes up a lot of our social lives. Whether it is happy hour, tailgating, dinner parties or the backyard barbecue, chances are that beer, liquor and wine flows as freely as laughter and casual conversation.
Over half of the American population drinks on a regular basis, and there is probably a good percentage of those who drink on a daily basis. If you drink on a daily basis, does that mean that you have a problem with alcohol? Not necessarily. You may have a drink after dinner every night, or you may meet your friends out for cocktails and never experience any trouble–and if that is you, more power to you.
And yes, there are those moments where you may have an embarassing moment from a night out on the town. Whether it is getting into a fight, not remembering certain events from your evening, or falling over yourself over some hottie and making a complete fool of yourself, you chalk it up to a bad night, dust yourself off and move on.
However, what if those moments started to pile up and add interest? What if your family and friends started to throw you some shade because of the way you act when you drink? What if your health, your work and your relationships started to show strain because of your drinking?
If this is happening to you, there are signs that you may have a drinking problem.
You May Not Be An Alcoholic, But…
You may find yourself in this situation, and if you are the first thing that you are telling yourself is wait a minute, I don’t have a drinking problem. I am not an alcoholic.
Yeah, you may like to have your share of fun and like to get loose, and yeah, you may get into a little trouble now and then. You are killin’ it at work and you are paying the bills and meeting all of your family obligations and by all appearances have everything under control.
That may be the case now, but if you have been a regular reader of the blogs here at Sober Nation, you have no doubt seen it repeated that alcoholism is a complex and progressive disease. True, you may not be yet treading in the deep and dangerous waters of alcoholism, but there are definite signs that you have have a drinking problem.
Your family and friends may be starting to notice that you become a different person when you drink. You may be even noticing yourself that things are not quite right. When those voices inside (and i mean the good voices) start telling you that you are starting to turn left, it is important to pay attention.
The following are some clear signs that you may have a drinking problem.
1 – You Promise Yourself That You Will Quit, But Won’t
One of the main signs that you may have a drinking problem is making the vow that you will never, ever drink again. This often happens after an embarrassing or humiliating moment under the influence.
In normal situations, people who experience these types of situations are good to their word and stop drinking to avoid further embarrassment. However, if you find yourself having to apologize over and over for the embarrassing things you said and do when you are drinking, it can definitely indicate that you may have an alcohol dependence issue.
2 – Your Tolerance Grows
In simple terms, tolerance to alcohol occurs when it no longer has the effect as it did when a person first starts drinking. We can remember back to the first times we drank and we realized that it didn’t take much for us to get our buzz on.
As a person becomes a more experienced drinker their bodies adapt to the alcohol in their system that it no longer has the impacts as it once did. However, in order for a person to get that buzz, that need to drink more alcohol and the cycle of tolerance and more booze starts growing wider.
If you are reaching the point where you can knock them back and don’t feel the effects, it may indicate that you may have a drinking problem.
Your Social Life Starts to Revolve Around Drinking
While there is nothing wrong with having drinks with friends or work friends, it may be a problem if you only or mostly want to be social only when there is drinking involved. If you find yourself saying things like “hey, let’s meet at my place for drinks before dinner” or “let’s meet at the bar before the game” with increasing frequency, you may becoming alcohol dependent.
If your friends and family say that your personality turns on a dime when you start drinking, that is a sign that you may have a drinking problem. When people drink, they may become loud, reckless and even violent when consuming alcohol or they may withdraw entirely.
Oftentimes people will drink in order to mask depression, relieve anxiety or to deal with the stresses of everyday life. If alcohol starts becoming your primary coping mechanism, you may have an issue with your drinking.
You Experience Blackouts
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Perhaps the scariest sign of alcohol dependence and abuse is the phenomenon of the blackout. When you blackout, you are completely conscious the entire time, but there are substantial gaps in what you remember.
If you go out and don’t remember parts of your evening, have your friends remind you of what you did the night before, or are having to say “what did I do last night?” on a more regular basis, you are dealing with a drinking problem.
Do You Have a Drinking Problem? Get Help Right Away
If you are showing signs that you may have a drinking problem, don’t wait and make the problem worse; seek help immediately. While you may not be a full-blown alcoholic, when you are starting to notice the signs of alcohol dependence, you inch closer to the dangers of addiction.
If you are looking to quit drinking for good, you can count on Sober Nation to provide you with the information you need in order to get better. From informative article and blogs to a comprehensive treatment directory, we give you the tools and support you need to turn the corner.
Contact Sober Nation today and start living a healthier and happier life.