The signs of alcohol abuse can be subtle. Even for those who are close to someone, the symptoms of alcohol addiction might not be easy to spot. You may suspect that someone you care about is having trouble with alcohol, but how can you tell for sure if they could benefit from alcohol addiction treatment?
Learning more about how to spot the signs of alcohol addiction can empower you to have those challenging but important conversations with a loved one. Knowing that they are supported by their nearest and dearest can help them make the difficult but brave choice to seek the help that they need. Call Pride Institute today at 888.408.1625 to learn more about LGBTQ+ alcohol addiction treatment.
5 Signs That May Point to Alcoholism
Alcohol addiction can have a profound impact on an individual’s physical, mental and emotional health. Long-term alcohol misuse affects nearly every organ in the body, including the brain. This can lead to changes in mood and behavior, as well as problems with memory, decision-making, and coordination. Alcohol withdrawal can cause serious physical symptoms such as nausea, sweating, tremors, increased blood pressure, and even seizures. Chronic alcohol use can also lead to higher rates of depression, anxiety, and suicide attempts. In addition, people who abuse alcohol are at greater risk of developing certain types of cancer, liver disease, and cardiovascular problems.
Alcohol addiction also puts a strain on relationships with family members, friends, and co-workers. People who misuse alcohol may become isolated, have difficulty sustaining relationships, or neglect their responsibilities at work or school. They may also come into conflict with the law, as drinking can impair judgment and lead to poor decision-making, which could result in legal troubles.
Five signs your loved one is struggling with alcoholism include:
- Cannot limit or control their drinking; drinking to excess
- New or worsening problems at home, work, or school related to drinking
- Loss of important relationships due to drinking
- Drinking and getting alcohol is the main focus of every day
- Alcohol is hidden around the house, car, or workspace
Even if your loved one may not seem intoxicated all the time, they might be hiding their problem. If you suspect a loved one is struggling with alcohol addiction, it is important to try to get them to accept help.
But My Loved One Doesn’t Seem Drunk All the Time
People who drink on a regular basis, especially those who are dealing with alcoholism, may not seem as intoxicated as you would expect. Over time, a person’s body builds up a tolerance to alcohol, and the overt effects of drinking are not as obvious as they had been before. This is a dangerous situation because a person might be quite intoxicated even though they seem mostly normal. It could also be a sign that they are physically addicted to alcohol and might experience withdrawal if they suddenly stop drinking. People who are physically addicted to alcohol should seek help from an alcohol addiction treatment center, because withdrawing from alcohol can be medically risky if done without the appropriate support.
What Can I Do if My Loved One Refuses to Admit There Is a Problem?
When a loved one refuses to admit there is a problem, it can be difficult to know how to best help them. It’s important to remember that change can’t happen unless they are willing and ready. Therefore, instead of trying to convince your loved one to accept help, focus on creating an environment that is safe and accepting.
Some ways to get your loved one to open up and be receptive to the idea of professional help include:
- Encouraging your loved one to speak openly and honestly
- Listening without pressure or judgment
- Letting them know you’re here to help and support them
- Bringing up the topic of professional help gently
Remind them that you are there for them no matter what and that alcohol addiction is a treatable condition. Let them know you are available to help them explore alcohol abuse treatment options, such as counseling, support groups, or residential rehabilitation programs. With patience and understanding, you can help your loved one get the support they need.
Pride Institute: Serving the Recovery Care Needs of the LGBTQ+ Community Since 1986
At our treatment centers in Minneapolis and Eden Prairie, Minnesota, each client works closely with staff to develop a treatment plan that will work for their specific, unique needs. Reach out to our caring and compassionate staff today at 888.408.1625 or via our online form.