For better or for worse, most of what happens in our minds is beyond the control of our will, and even happens without us noticing.
Do you think you may have problems with alcohol?
What is alcoholism
Alcoholism is a disease caused by excessive and prolonged consumption of alcoholic beverages. Consumption creates physical and / or psychological dependence and affects the consumer's health and the different areas of his life (family, work, social ...).
Continued alcohol consumption causes physical health problems such as liver cirrhosis, hypertension, gastrointestinal problems, malnutrition, cardiovascular problems and increases the probability of suffering from some types of cancer. As for mental health, mood disorders such as depression can appear, accentuate some diseases and even produce brain damage. In addition, a large intake can cause death.
Symptoms of alcoholism
Alcoholism can range from mild to severe depending on the symptoms, but is harmful in any case. Symptoms vary by person, but generally are as follows:
- Inability to limit the amount of alcohol you consume.
- Desire or attempts that end in failure to reduce the amount of alcohol you consume.
- Spending time drinking or recovering after drinking.
- Strong desire or need to drink alcohol.
- Failure to comply with work or family responsibilities due to alcohol consumption.
- Continuous use of alcohol even when you know that this causes health and social problems.
- Abandonment or reduction of social or work activities and hobbies to consume alcohol.
- Drinking alcohol in situations where it is not safe, such as driving or swimming.
- Development of tolerance to alcohol, so you need more to feel its effect or you have a reduced effect by the same amount.
- Presence of withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, sweating and tremors, when you do not drink, or drinking to avoid these symptoms.
- Constant search for alcohol and reasons for drinking.
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Alcoholism includes episodes of alcohol intoxication and episodes with the presence of withdrawal symptoms.
- Symptoms of poisoning: inappropriate behavior, unstable moods, impaired judgment, difficulty speaking, attention or memory problems, and poor coordination. You can also have so-called mental gaps, which are episodes in which you do not remember what happened. Very high blood alcohol levels can lead to coma or even death.
- Withdrawal symptoms: They can occur several hours or up to four or five days after a large intake of alcohol. They consist of sweating, acceleration of the heartbeat, tremors in the hands, trouble sleeping, nausea and vomiting, hallucinations, restlessness and nervousness, anxiety and even seizures can occur. Symptoms can affect you in your daily activities.
Could I have alcohol problems?
We are used to identifying the alcoholic as someone who drinks from morning, who has obvious problems and who spends practically all day drunk. But there are many types of alcoholism and some very difficult to identify from the outside. And all of them, more or less obvious, can cause very serious health problems.
The following questions can guide you on whether or not you need help.
- Have you ever tried to stop drinking for a week and couldn't keep up?
- Has a family member or friend told you that you drink too much?
- Have you woken up without remembering what had happened the night before?
- Have you ever had a drink in the morning or waited impatiently for the time to have a drink?
- Have you ever been embarrassed by your way of drinking?
- Have you ever been late or missed work because of alcohol or hangover?
- Did you drink at home before a social gathering like a party?
- Have you had discussions or family problems related to alcohol consumption?
If you have answered yes to any of these questions, it is recommended that you consult a professional. Recognizing the problem is the first step in recovering from the disease.
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