- Feb 18
- AddictionAlcohol Addiction Treatment
Alcohol abuse, or drinking alcohol in excess, is a colloquial term that refers to the clinically proper label, alcohol use disorder (AUD).
An individual’s risk for developing AUD depends on how quickly and often they consume alcohol. Heavy alcohol use and binge drinking, sometimes referred to as alcohol misuse, increase the risk of alcohol use disorder over time.
Alcohol Use Disorder Symptoms
Symptoms of alcohol use disorder are evaluated by health care professionals over the past year and may include the following:
- Experienced nausea, anxiousness, restlessness, shaking, or other withdrawal signs when your drinks wore off
- Felt much less of an effect from your usual number of drinks or had to consume more alcohol to feel the desired effect
- Continued to drink even though it made you feel sad or anxious
- Continued to consume alcohol even when it negatively affected your professional and personal relationships
- Experienced issues at home, school or work due to hangovers or excessive drinking
- Repeatedly placed yourself in risky situations after drinking or while consuming alcohol
- Spent a considerable amount of time recovering from a hangover or drinking
- Cut back on hobbies or activities you used to enjoy so you could drink instead
- Had the intention of consuming less but couldn’t follow through on your intention
- Craved alcohol badly
- You drank longer or more than you intended to
Having at least two of these symptoms in the past year may lead to an AUD diagnosis. The more symptoms you experience, the more severe the alcohol use disorder.
What Increases the Risk for AUD?
Factors that increase the risk for alcohol use disorder include:
- A history of trauma and mental health conditions
- A family history of alcohol problems and genetics
- Drinking at an early age
How Much Alcohol Is Too Much?
Your drinking habits have become problematic when they cause negative thinking patterns or emotional turmoil. You’ll know you’re consuming too much alcohol if the resulting behavior leads to trouble in your social activities, school or career performance or relationships.
Consult your personal health care provider if you’re concerned that you or someone in your family has a drinking problem.
Let Gateway Foundation Help You Make Your Recovery Goals a Reality
If you or a loved one is struggling to stay on track with your recovery goals, there’s always hope. Gateway Foundation has a team of compassionate and experienced professionals ready to assist you in overcoming alcohol use disorder.