In England alone, according to Alcohol Concern, 595,000 people are addicted to alcohol, but only one in six addicts gets help. Some (they are called highly functional alcoholics) manage to maintain stable work, good relations with family and friends, and at first glance they look happy and successful – not at all like those whom we imagine hearing the word “alcoholic”.
And yet – despite the fact that you may well “function” —the unhealthy dynamics in drinking alcohol can cause tremendous damage, both physically and mentally. If you are concerned about how much you (or your friend) are drinking, the following signs will help determine if it is time to ask for help.
- You are always in favor to drink
Red flag for those who consider themselves “the soul of the company.” “A person who has a drinking problem is most likely always ready to drink – it helps him seem cheerful and sociable,” explains Andrew Mizell, head of Alcohol Concern in Wales. “But this does not mean that alcohol does not harm him.” If you are always the first to order a cocktail or now for the seventh time you add prosecco to yourself, when all your friends have enough, then it’s time to think about why you agree to drink: because you really want to or because you cannot say no.
“It can be one or two glasses or a whole bottle — a person who is physically dependent on alcohol drinks every day,” says Andrew. Lovers of banquet on weekends are not included in this category. But if you are one of those ladies who remain sober in principle until Saturday, this does not mean that your habits can be called “healthy”. “It’s still a blow to your body, you may have long-term health problems,” explains Andrew.
- When you start drinking, it’s hard for you to stop.
One of the questions that help identify a potential alcoholic is, “How often is it difficult for you to stop drinking if you have already begun?” The answer “always” is not a diagnosis in itself, but it shows that there is something unhealthy in your attitude to alcohol. .
Among other questions – “How often because of alcohol do you fail to do something that you must do?”, “How often do you feel the need to drink in the morning?” And “How often do you not remember what happened?” last night?”.
- Drinking in your profession is the norm.
If you work in an industry related to the consumption of alcohol, the temptation is much stronger. Andrew is sure: the work will push you to “drink too much,” however, among people who constantly consume alcohol, your habits will seem quite “average”. Remember: what seems normal to you in your surroundings is not necessarily such outside of it. Listen to your body: if you feel bad – you may have to slow down.
- Are you kidding about the fact that you are an alcoholic
Most of us probably joked that in our past, they say, there is a suspicious tendency to drink. When does it stop being just a joke?
“Joking about alcohol,” stresses Andrew Mizall, “is one of those ways that highly functional alcoholics usually resort to, trying to hide their addiction. In the end, this leads to the fact that they do not receive assistance on time. “
- Relationships suffer from your habit
Not surprisingly, problems with alcohol are often associated with problems in a relationship. “If one of the partners drinks more than the other, at least sooner or later they will feel that they have not so much in common. With someone who often drinks alcohol, sober will feel lonely, he will simply be bored. And if a person really drinks a lot, he will forget, for example, that he promised something to his partner, and alcohol will come to him in the first place, pushing the partner to the background. And this, of course, does not look like a recipe for family happiness. ”
- Others worry about you
Whether your boyfriend or best friend, colleague or parents – your loved ones know you better than you think. And if they say that the level of alcohol content in your blood is alarming, listen to them. “If you think you drink a lot, you can always go to a general practitioner, find a support group, or some kind of service not far from home.”