Alcohol addiction is a complex and challenging disorder that affects millions of people around the world. Understanding and recognising the signs of alcohol addiction is key to getting the right support and reclaiming a healthier life.
But what exactly are the symptoms of an alcohol problem? That’s what we’ll be exploring in this blog post. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol misuse, our helpful guide aims to provide support and encourage seeking assistance from reputable rehab providers such as Rehubs.
Read on for the physical, behavioural, and psychological aspects of alcohol addiction, and the steps to take if you resonate with these signs and symptoms.
Exploring The Physical Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
Recognising the physical signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorder (AUD) can be difficult, especially in the early stages of dependence. However, it’s essential for early intervention.
Alcohol can have negative consequences on your physical health over time, manifesting in ways that can often be overlooked. Here are some ways that alcohol can impact you physically:
Some physical warning signs to look out for may include:
- Chronic fatigue
- Disturbed sleep patterns
- Unexplained changes in weight
- Nausea and vomiting
Frequent heavy drinking can also increase the risk of alcohol-related liver disease (liver damage). Alcohol abuse can lead to inflammation and swelling in the liver as well as hepatitis. This can lead to cirrhosis of the liver, which can be very dangerous.
Alcohol consumption is also a carcinogen. This means that drinking alcohol can increase the risk of developing certain types of cancer.
If you are noticing physical changes such as fatigue, trouble sleeping or liver damage and you’re concerned about your drinking habits, we recommend that you seek support. This is something we can help you with at Rehubs.
Another physical sign of alcohol addiction is an increased tolerance to alcohol. This is when you require a larger amount of alcohol to feel the same effects. For example, you may notice that you’re still sober after several drinks, whereas others around you may be visibly intoxicated.
Likewise, you may find yourself drinking more and more alcohol to feel ‘drunk’. Tolerance can quickly develop into a physical dependence, so it’s best to seek help sooner rather than later.
Being physically dependent on alcohol can result in withdrawal symptoms when you attempt to stop drinking alcohol or cut down on your drinking.
The withdrawal process can be challenging, both physically and emotionally. Some common alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:
More severe cases may involve hallucinations or seizures – delirium tremens (DTs). Withdrawal symptoms can vary from person to person. However, they appear to be more severe in those with severe addictions.
Exploring The Behavioural Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
Alcohol misuse often manifests in behavioural changes that can strain relationships and impact daily life. This may include binge drinking (when you drink 4 or 5 drinks in one occasion) on a regular basis. Low-risk drinking habits include drinking up to 14 units per week spread over three or more days – so if you drink more than 14 units per week, you could be at risk of addiction.
Ultimately, spending a lot of time drinking too much alcohol is a key symptom of addiction. Here are some more behavioural symptoms to look out for:
Shift in Priorities
One common behavioural symptom is a noticeable shift in priorities. This means you may become preoccupied with finding and consuming alcohol. You may also neglect your responsibilities, and stop enjoying hobbies you once loved.
As the disorder progresses, it can become more and more difficult to perform well at your job and maintain your relationships and family obligations.
Drinking Alone or at Socially Inappropriate Times
One key sign you may have an alcohol problem is that you drink at inappropriate times – for example, at work or during the morning. You may also drink heavily alone.
Another symptom of alcohol addiction is continuing to drink alcohol the next day after a night of drinking, or simply not stopping your alcohol consumption. You may also continue to consume alcohol alone after drinking with friends or family.
Exploring The Psychological Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
Alcohol can have a significant impact on your mental health. Many people use alcohol as a coping mechanism for negative feelings or sensations. This can create a vicious cycle that can worsen mental health issues.
Changes in Mood
An alcoholic person may become more irritable, and experience mood swings and out-of-character aggression. Likewise, people with alcohol abuse issues may also experience high levels of stress, or mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
If you think that addiction is impacting your mental health, we recommend consulting with a mental health professional and an addiction specialist.
Impaired Cognitive Function
Alcohol dependence can impair your cognitive function, leading to memory lapses and difficulty concentrating.
At Rehubs, we understand how physical and psychological symptoms can be linked. Our online alcohol rehab services include therapeutic interventions to address these underlying issues, providing you with the tools to overcome psychological hurdles on the path to recovery.
Steps to Take if You Have Symptoms of Alcoholism
If these symptoms resonate with you, you have taken the first step – you have acknowledged that you have a problem with alcohol.
If left untreated, problem drinking can worsen, and these symptoms can become more severe. This is why you should seek treatment for alcohol addiction sooner rather than later.
At Rehubs, we offer comprehensive online alcohol rehab services, providing accessible support tailored to your unique needs.
It’s essential to engage in open and honest communication, both with yourself and those offering support, to pave the way for a successful recovery journey.
The first stage of addiction treatment is detoxification. This involves safely removing alcohol from your system under medical supervision. After completing a detox, you can seek therapeutic support for lasting recovery.
Therapeutic interventions play a huge role in addressing the root causes of alcohol addiction. At Rehubs, we incorporate evidence-based therapies, including individual counselling and group therapy, to guide you through the behavioural and psychological aspects of your recovery.
We are committed to breaking down barriers to recovery by providing accessible and flexible online alcohol rehab services. Whether you’re in the UK or anywhere else, our virtual support can be accessed from the comfort of your home.
Whether you’re struggling with substance abuse or alcohol abuse and alcoholism, we are here to support your long-term recovery. Call us today on 0330 094 5970, or submit a free consultation.
Nicholas Conn is a leading industry addiction expert who runs the UK’s largest addiction advisory service and is regularly featured in the national press, radio and TV. He is the founder and CEO of a drug and alcohol rehab centre called Help4addiction, which was founded in 2015. He has been clean himself since 2009 and has worked in the Addiction and Rehab Industry for over a decade.