Properly defining if a person is an alcoholic is no easy task. There are several factors you have to consider, some of them hidden from view. One person could be calmly sipping a mojito on a bar corner. Another could be downing his or her third can of beer. Are they both alcoholics?
Yes and no. Better put, they could be, but it’s hard to tell. It’s less about what they drink as to how they drink it. Alcoholism influences a person’s entire life, so alcoholics are identified by how their lives are affected, as well as the lives of the people around them.
In the very core of this behavioral disorder is the dependency. Dependency on any substance can cause a plethora of negative effects. In general, people with substance dependencies suffer the following symptoms:
Spotting the symptoms is a tricky process. Often, alcoholics will be in denial. In some cases, they would weave the perfect justification for their actions. Confronting an alcoholic is about as hard, as they can become irritable and angry. Bad as it may be, let’s not forget that they also victims. Alcoholics are under the alcohol’s vice-grip and often, they can’t escape on their own.
These symptoms share the core symptoms of addiction. They are difficult to point out and are often mistaken for something else. A man who always has a flask of rum doesn’t mean he’s alcoholic. On the other hand, if that man gets angry at you when you stop him, it might be a problem.
When you have a loved one that’s going down a similar path, be honest with them. For alcoholics, they often don’t realize it’s a problem until someone else points it out. If they trust you enough, they will listen. If they don’t, talk to other people close to them. Alcoholism is a slippery slope and it’s long term effects require equally long term solutions. Stop them early and stop them. The earlier the better.
Check out this playlist for more information on alcohol addiction.
Dr. Vikram Tarugu, M.D, is the CEO of Detox of South Florida, Inc and medical professional focused on addiction. A veteran in the medical field with over 25 years of professional experience. He is a consultant for many South Florida Rehab centers. Patients travel from allover the US to seek his help with addiction and Hepatitis C treatment.
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