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Defining Dependence in Habitual Alcohol Users

alcoholism - Bergand Group

Drawing the line between abuse and dependence in habitual alcohol users can be difficult. Often users themselves will be in denial that they are dependent on alcohol. If they are good at hiding their use, their friends and family may not realize either that they have reached the stage of dependence. Or, friends and family may not be able to distinguish the differences between abuse and dependence, and therefore may not be aware of the severity of the user’s alcoholism. If you or someone you know engages is habitual alcohol abuse, these are the following signs to look for that suggest you or they are dependent on alcohol.

Alcohol Dependence

Inability to stop drinking – The inability to decrease or halt consumption is a clear sign of dependence. If when one tries to stop there are withdrawal signs such as tremors, this too is an obvious sign of dependence.

Defensiveness – Getting defensive about ones alcohol use suggests denial and dependence. Lying about use habits or hiding them from others is also a clear sign.

Neglect – Dependent users may neglect their appearance and nutrition. They may also neglect relationships, friendships, family, school, or work, and see their performance suffer at work or in school.

Tolerance – As a user becomes more dependent on alcohol, his or her tolerance will increase. More and more alcohol will be needed to achieve the desired effect.

DUI/Accident – If you are at fault for an alcohol related accident or receive a DUI, you may be dependent on alcohol.


If you or someone you know is dependent on alcohol, there is help available. The Bergand Group is a professional and compassionate alcohol treatment center located in Baltimore County that can help you eliminate your dependence on alcohol and resume healthy life.


About The Bergand Group:

At The Bergand Group in Baltimore County 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 rehabilitation 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. To speak with someone at our office, please call us at 410-853-7691. You can also contact us via email, and follow us on FacebookGoogle+Twitter and LinkedIn.

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