Alcohol abuse, also known as alcohol misuse, is a serious problem in Denver. It is a drinking pattern where a person drinks too much alcohol too often, interfering with daily life. Approximately 27% of Denverites binge drink regularly, opening them up to various health-related concerns.
You suffer from alcohol abuse if you drink more than the recommended alcohol limit daily and weekly. Alcohol addiction is a problem that harms relationships and causes an inability to work or function properly in all areas of life.
Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Alcohol abuse leads to alcoholism and physical dependency on alcohol. Too much alcohol at one time can also lead to alcohol poisoning.
The recommended amount for one alcoholic drink is usually defined as a 12-ounce bottle of beer and a five-ounce glass of wine. For distilled spirits, it should be a 1.5-ounce glass, such as rum, whiskey, or tequila.
You will be abusing alcohol when you do the following:
- For women: Take more than seven drinks of alcohol per week, or on more than three occasions.
- For men: Take more than 14 alcoholic drinks each week, or more than four drinks per occasion.
- For men and women over 65: Take more than seven drinks per week and more than three per occasion.
Consuming these large amounts of alcohol daily will lead to alcohol abuse and harm your health, work, and relationships. It may also cause legal problems in the future.
Symptoms of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Alcohol abuse symptoms include taking too much alcohol in one sitting. You, however, cannot accurately diagnose yourself as being an alcoholic because there are several factors to consider. A health practitioner will need to evaluate the following before making the diagnosis. Having between two and five of the following points means that you are actually suffering from Alcohol Use Disorder:
- You have tried quitting alcohol before for a week or more, but you are unable to make it past a few days.
- You cannot stop drinking alcohol once you start, and you continue until you black out.
- You cannot function properly at work or home when you are drinking.
- You have been feeling guilty about your drinking.
- Other people have been critical of your drinking.
- You must have a drink first thing in the morning when you wake up, even before going to work.
- You have been hiding your alcohol drinking for a while.
- You have had blackouts and memory lapses after drinking too much.
- You are constantly depressed.
- You have received driving tickets for driving under the influence.
- Your drinking has been interfering with your relationships.
- Your hands have started shaking.
Alcohol affects your health in more ways than one, and it may cause problems such as liver disease and even lead to death and injuries from accidents while drunk. You may need immediate help from a rehab facility to save your life.
What Causes Alcohol Abuse?
There are many things that lead to alcohol abuse, including the following:
- Peer pressure
- Coping mechanism
- The need to relax
- Being unhappy
- Having a genetic predisposition from a family history of abusing alcohol
Most people abusing alcohol will frequently hear from friends and family members that they have a problem, which in most cases, they will deny.
Can Alcohol Abuse Be Avoided or Prevented?
Yes. But if you have a family history of alcoholism, you may have to work a little harder than just resisting and limiting your alcohol intake. There are some tips you can use to reduce your alcohol consumption, which include:
- Limiting your drinking to one drink when you are alone or out with friends
- Seeking treatment for any underlying mental health issues
- Not spending time with people who abuse alcohol
- Talking to a health care professional
- Joining a support group comprised of other people facing similar challenges.
Your doctor may screen you for alcohol abuse. The AAFP or American Academy for Family Physicians recommends yearly screening for anyone over 18 years or older with a genetic predisposition. Teens in this category between the years of 12 and 17 should avoid alcohol altogether.
Alcohol Abuse Treatment
The first step towards treatment is accepting that you have a problem. Most studies show that people struggling with alcohol abuse have difficulty getting their diagnosis, but they can benefit significantly from addiction treatment at a rehab clinic. The sooner you go to rehab, the better the outcome.
Behavioral therapy has been highly beneficial in alcohol abuse treatment, and it can take many forms, such as group therapy, support groups, counseling, and many others.
Living With Alcohol Abuse
This means accepting that you have an alcohol abuse problem and always working towards recognizing the triggers that make you want to drink. A good example would be hanging out with others who love drinking, which makes it hard for you to quit or control your drinking.
You may also experience unhappiness and stress in your life, which can lead to excessive drinking. Learning how to manage stress and sadness could help you cope with alcohol abuse, eliminate the problem from your life, and avoid the many diseases caused by alcohol.
Helping A Loved One With Alcohol Abuse
Dealing with a family member or friend with addiction is extremely difficult. To start with, the process of acceptance is usually long and hard. A person with an addiction will rarely accept that they have a problem, and helping them see reason could be futile.
It is essential to take this process slowly. Understand that they have a disease like anyone else suffering from other ailments, and simultaneously try to be comforting and loving.
Listening to their reasons for continued drinking could help you get to the root cause of the problem. Most people are addicted to alcohol due to depression, anxiety, and mental illness.
Alcohol Abuse Denver – AspenRidge Recovery
The AspenRidge Recovery Center is Colorado’s leading treatment center for alcohol abuse disorder, mental health, and drug abuse. We also deal with dual diagnosis and help individuals with addiction achieve sobriety and go on to live sober lives.
The Joint Commission also certifies our center, and our licensed counselors are trained, specifically, in substance misuse and addiction. We offer the following programs:
We can help guide you through the different stages of alcohol addiction and next steps. It’s also critical to understand that treatment is different for everyone and, therefore, a tailored treatment approach is important. Contact us today for more information about Colorado alcohol rehabilitation at 855-281-5588.