Are there different levels of alcoholism?

Alcoholism is sometimes a difficult problem to recognize. Once people hit a legal drinking age, it is completely normal for them to go out and have some drinks or even keep alcohol at their house. There are certain signs to look for if you or someone you love may be an alcoholic. Some people may get drunk on the weekends, or they may even drink on a daily basis. Although a person may be a frequent drinker, this does not necessarily make them an alcoholic.

There are different stages of alcoholism; and the earlier that the person seeks help for this disease, the more likely they are to recover. An alcoholic suffers from two primary problems: mental obsession and physical craving. These two symptoms make it virtually impossible for the person to control their drinking because they have lost the power of choice in the situation. Once they begin drinking, they will not stop until they run out of alcohol, run out of money, or simply become unconscious.

It is a common misconception that an alcoholic is the stereotypical person who has become homeless and has lost everything. If this were true, then anyone who reached a rough patch in life would be considered an alcoholic. People who do not have a problem with alcohol lose jobs, have divorces, or are financially unstable. The main difference between an alcoholic and non-alcoholic is that an alcoholic cannot change their ways if it is the source of all their problems.

When should someone get help?

Someone who is a daily drinker is going to be able to stop drinking when their job might be threatened, they have health issues, or their spouse is about to walk out on them. They can understand the consequences of their drinking and change their ways. An alcoholic is suffering from a disease that does not want them to recover, and they will rationalize and justify their behavior until the bitter end. They believe that their drinking is not the problem, but that they are having bad luck or the rest of the world is the problem. Their mind tells them that maybe they just shouldn’t go out and drive when they’re drunk, or they just shouldn’t drink around other people because that’s the problem. The truth is that they have become dependent on alcohol and cannot stop drinking.

The disease of alcoholism is progressive and can get much worse over time. The person has a much better chance for their body to heal if they’re able to seek help before years of continuous alcohol abuse. Over time, the person’s internal organs are drastically affected by alcohol. The liver, kidneys, and heart are the main organs that alcohol can damage, and sometimes they reach a point where they can be permanently damaged. The liver can fail to process toxins properly, or the person can suffer from a variety of types of heart disease increasing their chances of heart attack or other issues. Long-term alcoholism also takes its toll on the brain causing damage that is sometimes permanent.

Typically, the person suffering from the disease can recover only when they finally realize they have a problem. This can come from the help of their loved ones; but if they don’t fully concede to the fact that they have this disease, then they will most likely not stay sober. Treatment facilities help these individuals become educated on the disease of addiction and teach them a new way to live without the use of alcohol. It is never too late to recover from alcoholism. Call us today for more information.

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