Alcohol Dependency – What is it?

Alcohol abuse is the recurring overuse of alcohol. Despite negative consequences, a pattern of non-stop or binge drinking can result in harm to an individual’s physical health, relationships and ability to work.

Symptoms Of Alcohol Dependency

If you think you or someone you know might be suffering from alcohol addiction, some of the signs to look for include:
  • Worrying about when you can have your next drink
  • Sweating, nausea and difficulty sleeping if you don’t drink
  • Needing to drink more alcohol to get drunk
  • Drinking when you first wake up in the morning
  • Drinking regularly on your own
  • Attempting to hide your drinking
  • Arguing with friends and family about your drinking
  • Neglecting your everyday responsibilities
  • Participating in risky behaviours as a result of drinking (i.e. drink driving).

The Dangers of Alcohol Dependency

Alcohol addiction comes with a whole raft of negative impacts, all of which become worse the longer you drink. For one thing, alcohol abuse can affect your mental health, often leading to anxiety, depression, paranoia, and psychosis. It also affects your short-term physical health in a number of ways including weight gain, sleeping problems and increased susceptibility to infections and chronic disease. And in the long-term alcoholism can cause permanent brain damage, cirrhosis of the liver and a high risk of mouth and throat cancer, stroke and heart failure. And finally, there are the social implications, with an increased risk of relationship breakdown, loss of employment and antisocial, criminal and risk-taking behaviours.