If you find yourself experiencing relationship problems, agitation, poor physical health, and other symptoms due to drinking you may need help.
Casual drinkers, social drinkers and moderate drinkers can all fall prey to alcohol’s effects when the number of drinks consumed gradually increases over time. When withdrawal symptoms or “hangover” drive a person to drink as a means of relief, it’s likely a physical dependency is at work. Once a person starts drinking as a way to cope with life’s daily stressors, the risk of addiction looms near.
According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, alcoholism claims an estimated 80,000 lives within any given year. On average, deaths from excess alcohol consumption account for 30 years of life lost for each person.
The effects of alcoholism can wreak havoc once a person loses the ability to limit the amount of alcohol consumed. With time, both the brain and body gradually deteriorate leaving a person susceptible to any number of medical conditions and psychological disorders.
If you suspect you or someone you know may need alcohol rehab help, here are 10 signs to watch out for –
1. Persistent Cravings
The more a person drinks the more dependent brain chemical functions become. Persistent cravings develop once physical dependency sets in. Persistent cravings also make it difficult for drinkers to reduce their intake amounts or stop drinking altogether.
2. Loss of Control
While someone may intend to only have one or two drinks, once drinking begins these intentions quickly go out the window. Alcohol’s effects on cognitive function all but diminish a person’s decision-making abilities once addiction is at work.
As one of the most commonly experienced withdrawal effects, agitation results from alcohol’s effects on nerve signal conduction within the central nervous system. In the absence of “needed” amounts of alcohol, misfires between nerve cells will continue.
4. Relationship Problems
After a certain point, a person’s everyday personality and connection with others starts to fade as alcohol impairs normal brain chemical functions. Relationships with family and friends inevitably start to suffer.
5. Delirium Tremens
According to the U. S.National Library of Medicine, delirium tremens take the form of frequent body tremors, episodes of disorientation, hallucinations, fear and long periods of deep sleep. This severe withdrawal effect develops after years of excess drinking.
6. Problems at Work/School
Alcohol effects on brain function slowly weaken a person’s cognitive abilities and emotional stasis. On the job or a school, a person starts to make mistakes he or she wouldn’t normally make. Missed days at work/school also occur more frequently.
As one of the most dangerous of withdrawal effects, people with a long-history of alcohol addiction can easily start to develop seizure conditions. When alcohol-related, seizures develop from considerable deterioration within the brainstem region.
Long-term alcohol consumption has a cumulative effect on brain chemical levels as well as on brain structures. Psychosis results from damage to the brain’s limbic system and frontal cortex regions. At this point, a person has essentially disconnected from self and reality.
Alcohol addiction can cause a person to experience auditory, tactile and/or visual hallucinations. These episodes occur more and more often the longer a person drinks.
10. Poor Physical Health
Alcohol’s effects on the central nervous system disrupt the body’s digestive, heart and respiratory systems. Over time, drinkers become more susceptible to illness and eventually start to develop chronic health conditions.
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