Anything in excess does more harm than good, especially alcohol. An addiction to alcohol can have serious long term effects on the body. Find out how to recognise the signs of alcohol abuse and get help before it is too late.
Risks of excessive alcohol consumption
Excessive alcoholism can wreak havoc on a person’s life. Serious health conditions like liver cirrhosis, high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases can be a result of too much drinking. Excessive drinking may also lead to different types of cancers such as mouth, esophagus, breast, prostate and colorectal cancers. Alcohol is a depressant which makes people sad and not happy over time. In addition to personal health risks; the extreme drinking habits of a person can create family problems, lead to violent crimes and even cause death in automobile accidents.
Warning signs of alcohol addiction
The CAGE test employed by physicians is one way to confirm addiction to alcohol. With just four questions, this simple test can help to identify alcohol usage patterns. The questions are as follows:
Have you ever felt you should cut down on your drinking?
Have people annoyed you by criticizing your drinking?
Have you ever felt guilty about drinking alcohol?
Have you ever had a drink first thing in the morning to steady your nerves or to get rid of a hangover (an “eye-opener”)?
An affirmative answer to any one of these questions indicates that a drinking problem is likely and professional help is needed. Other signs of alcohol abuse may consist of the following:
You have to drink continuously.
Your drinking is creating problems at work.
Other people notice your drinking and comment or complain about it.
You are not able to recollect what you did when you were drinking alcohol.
Set limits or get help
It is unsafe to have more than one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men. One drink is equal to twelve ounces of beer, five ounces of wine or one and a half ounces of spirits. If you find it difficult to adhere to this rule, it is best to seek professional help. Help yourself first by accepting the fact that you have an alcohol addiction. Secondly, contact your family physician or a support group in your area to rid yourself of alcoholism.