Menu Close

What Are the Behavioral Issues With Alcoholism?

a man realizes he exhibits behavioral problems when he drinks too much

Alcoholism, or alcohol use disorder, can be a serious and disruptive condition for those who experience it. Families and loved ones can also find themselves caught up in the circumstances and behavioral issues that alcohol addiction can cause. Learning more about addiction in general, and specifically about behavioral issues related to alcoholism, can empower patients and their families to make the best choices when it comes to seeking alcohol addiction treatment. Call Northpoint Seattle at 888.483.6031 to learn more about alcohol addiction and treatment today.

Alcoholic Behavior: What Is Alcoholism?

In order to understand alcoholic behavioral issues, it can help to clarify some basic ideas about alcoholism. Addiction is a physical and psychological condition that can be very complicated and unique to each individual. In the past, alcohol addiction was seen as a primarily behavioral problem. Still, nowadays, it is more clearly understood as a chronic, relapsing condition that is treatable with the right kind of care and support.

For people who are in active addiction, which means that they are still drinking alcohol, the ways that alcohol can impact their thinking and behavior are a direct result of the process of addiction. Some things to know about alcohol addiction are:

  • Addiction works in two ways: first, by creating a feeling of reward in the brain that keeps people wanting to repeat the behavior, and second, by creating physical dependence in the body that causes withdrawal symptoms when the alcohol is stopped.
  • Often, there are psychological and emotional elements that can drive a person to continue drinking even when they understand that it is a problem in their life. In order to properly treat addiction, these elements must also be addressed.

Behavioral Issues Common in Alcohol Addiction

Some of the most common behavioral issues that may be seen in a person living with alcohol addiction are:

  • Drinking more than they mean to, or drinking when they promised not to
  • “Blacking out” or drinking to the point where they do not remember what happened
  • Becoming unreasonably angry when they cannot drink for some reason
  • Lying about drinking or trying to hide drinking
  • Getting in trouble at work, school, or with the law because of drinking
  • Personality changes that seem to be related to whether or not they are drinking

Behavioral Issues With Alcoholism: Setting Healthy Boundaries

Sometimes, simply knowing that their behavior is disrupting their family’s life or causing serious problems for them is the reason that a person decides to seek treatment. However, in some cases, families and loved ones of people experiencing alcohol addiction find themselves needing help to deal with these issues in a healthy way. Even if someone you care about is not ready to seek help for their drinking, you and your family can benefit from speaking to someone about how addiction is impacting your lives. Learning healthy coping skills and improving clear communication can go a long way when it comes to living with addiction in the family.

Often, people who have a loved one that is in active addiction can benefit from the following:

  • Seeking individual or family counseling
  • Attending support group meetings for family and loved ones of people in addiction
  • Practicing healthy communication skills
  • Learning about setting and maintaining appropriate boundaries
  • Expanding knowledge about topics related to alcohol, mental health, addiction, and behavioral issues

Northpoint Seattle: Recovery Care for Alcohol Addiction

At our treatment centers in Bellevue and Seattle, Washington, our patients can access cutting-edge recovery care for alcohol addiction on an outpatient basis. We are committed to helping individuals and families heal from addiction in a safe and non-judgmental environment. If you or someone you love has been struggling to stop drinking, reach out to our caring and knowledgeable staff today at 888.483.6031 or via our online contact form.