“With something like addiction that takes some time to develop, we may already be steps down the path before we realize we’re even on it.” You may be going about your life and realize all at once that you are deep into a substance abuse problem. This is obviously not a good situation to find yourself in, so learn to recognize some of the signs that you have a problem with alcohol so that you can break the habit earlier and more effectively.

Signs That Point to a Problem with Alcohol

If some or many of the following seem familiar or commonplace in your own life, then it’s likely that you have a problem with alcohol consumption. Remember, though, that some of these are applicable to other kinds of addictions, too, and are not exclusive to alcohol abuse.

Noticing that you “organize your social life around drinking” is a big signal. If you are constantly looking forward to after-work drinks with coworkers, schedule weekend bar nights every weekend, or opt to spend time with those you know imbibe a bit more than other friends, then it’s possible you’ve developed, or are developing, some problematic habits. This is made more troubling if you ‘pregame,’ or have a few drinks before even going to the bar. 

“When you start creating a formula to figure out how much you are drinking or to get the answer or number you want, that is something to take seriously.” For example, lessening the number of drinks consumed just because you’ve now eaten a meal is an excuse to avoid guilt or to give yourself permission for more drinks. Similarly, discounting those drunk before actually leaving the house is another issue. All drinks that you have throughout the day should count as drinks that you’ve consumed. It’s that simple.

Along those same lines, you can’t afford different definitions of alcohol to different kinds of drinks. It’s true that they have higher or lower per volume content, but beer is still booze. Wine is, too. Drinking an entire bottle of wine alone is a risky habit and is not eased by the fact that ‘it’s just wine.’ Drinking more, or much more, of something with something ‘lighter’ can lead to overindulgence and more serious consequences.

When out with others, you may notice that you have feelings of irritation toward others who a) don’t finish a drink, and b) who drink slowly. The habits of those without a problem with alcohol can seem baffling to those with an issue of substance abuse. However, being critical of those who drink in a healthy way is a hint that you’re doing the opposite. Problem drinkers don’t want to stand out, so they want others to ‘keep up’ and to stay out later in order to mask those habits.

There are a lot of signs that may clue you into your developing addiction. Learn to recognize these symptoms so that you can take action as soon as possible to set your life back on the right track. If you are suffering from an addiction of any kind or are looking for help for another person, then contact The Bergand Group. We offer recovery programs for yourself or for others or are seeking education materials about addictions. The Bergand Group is Maryland’s leading addiction recovery center and offers support for those struggling with addiction and mental health issues, including direction for those who may be denying an addiction.  We can help you to work through your addiction in a safe and healthy environment where everyone is committed to your care.

About The Bergand Group:

At The Bergand Group in Baltimore and Harford County, Maryland, our therapists have more than twenty years of experience in the mental health and addiction fields. Our focus is on providing comprehensive mental health care and appropriate care for addictive disorders. We offer both alcohol rehab and drug rehabilitation. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or substance addiction, there is help available. We also offer several other services, including family therapy and counseling. We can help. Contact us today.