What is Alcohol Addiction?
Alcohol addiction is a disease that can affect any individual and requires alcohol addiction treatment.
It does not have a specific cause or determining factor. However, genetic, psychological, or behavioural factors may contribute to having an alcohol addiction.
Alcohol addictions impact the brain and neurochemistry, which means that individuals with the disease may be unable to control their actions. A variety of factors impact the severity of the disease, such as how often a person drinks, how much they drink, and the type of alcohol that is consumed. Some may drink every day, and others may binge drink and have periods of sobriety.
If you heavily rely on alcohol and can’t stay sober for an extended period, you may have an alcohol addiction.
Alcohol addictions are different to drug addictions, as alcohol is widely available and accepted, unlike drugs. Alcohol is commonly linked to parties or celebrations. For this reason, it can be difficult to recognise alcohol addiction.
It may be tricky to determine whether someone enjoys having a few drinks, or if they have an addiction. Symptoms of addiction include:
- You have increased the quantity of alcohol you consume
- You increase the frequency of alcohol consumption
- You have a high tolerance for alcohol or often don’t feel symptoms of a hangover
- You drink alcohol at times that are not appropriate. For example, early mornings or during work
- If you always want to be somewhere where you can access alcohol, and if you avoid areas that have no access to alcohol
- If there is a change in your friendships, for example, you may be choosing to make friends with other alcohol addicts
- You avoid contacting loved ones
- You hide your alcohol or hide when you drink
- You feel a dependence on alcohol to get through everyday life
- You feel an increase in tiredness, depression, or other mental health issues
- You have experienced professional or legal problems, for example, you lost your job
Addictions often worsen over time. For this reason, you should look out for early warning signs to target as early as possible to avoid drastic consequences that arise because of alcohol addiction.
Alcohol addictions can cause a variety of health issues, such as:
- Heart or liver disease, which can be fatal
- The emergence of ulcers
- Complications with diabetes
- Birth defects
- Loss of bone
- Problems with your vision
- An increased risk of cancer
Taking risks while intoxicated can also cause fatal accidents. For example, drink driving, as well as drinking is associated with higher cases of suicide or murder. However, most of these risks can be eradicated if the alcohol addiction is targeted early.
Some treatment options include residential addiction treatment, alcoholics anonymous groups, other support groups, drug therapy, counselling, or nutritional changes.
If you believe you’re living with an addict, the Hader Clinic Queensland can help you understand how to navigate this moving forward.
Queensland’s only private rehab centre with ACHS accreditation
We are proud to be the only private drug and alcohol addiction treatment centre in Queensland to be independantly accredited.