Treatment is available to help, but many people do not realize that they should consider going to rehab. Some type of support is necessary, and more often than not, the best option is professional treatment.
The reality is that alcoholism is a disease, and it is one that does not go away on its own. It only gets worse as time goes on. There are so many people in Washington State who are alcoholics, but they just do not realize it. It can be relatively silent until it begins to destroy a person’s life, little by little.
More people need to be made aware of the dangers of alcohol. Sadly, it is considered “safer” simply because it is legal for adults to purchase it. But it is a drug, and drinking excessively ruins lives every single year in Washington. The good news is that treatment is available for anyone who needs it.
Alcoholism is a serious problem in the U.S., and it has been for quite some time. Once you see the alcohol statistics in our country, it's easy to see that something needs to change.
In addition, about 88,000 people die from an alcohol-related incident each year. This makes alcohol the fourth leading cause of death in the United States.
The misuse or abuse of alcohol is costly to our economy as well. In 2010, alcohol abuse cost close to $250 billion. Clearly, something needs to change. Today, alcoholism and alcohol abuse are more prevalent than ever before.
Making a change to these dangerous patterns begins with knowledge. The more you know about alcoholism and alcohol abuse, the better. With proper knowledge, you may be able to avoid becoming a part of these statistics.
It's important to know the alcoholism definition in order to understand what it is. Alcoholism is a disease that is characterized by the continual use of alcohol. Alcoholism is also habitual, and chronic.
When someone suffers from alcoholism, the consumption of alcohol interferes with their daily life. It causes problems with work, school and socialization. For many people, alcoholism also interferes with physical and mental health.
While people always make a choice to begin drinking, alcoholism itself is a disease. Once it sets in, it requires alcohol addiction treatment for recovery to take place.
It's also important to understand the alcoholic definition. You may have been wondering, what is an alcoholic? It's possible that you've been curious about your own alcohol use for quite some time. You've wondered if it classified you as an alcoholic.
A person is an alcoholic if he or she suffers from an alcohol addiction, or alcoholism. However, drinking a large amount of alcohol does not mean you are an alcoholic. It is a warning sign of becoming an alcoholic in the future.
Some experts believe that once you are an alcoholic, you will always be an alcoholic. This is a topic that has been debated for quite some time. The fact is that once you are an alcoholic, you are always at risk of returning to alcoholism. This has been proven time and time again.
The alcoholism statistics in Washington are just as bothersome as the nationwide statistics. Heavy drinking is a problem for both adults and adolescents in our state.
Regarding underage drinking:
The CDC reports that:
Regarding drunk driving in Washington State, the Washington Traffic Safety Commission reports that:
Alcohol abuse is very different from alcoholism or alcohol addiction.
Sometimes alcohol abuse and alcoholism are used interchangeably. However, they do mean different things.
It's possible to participate in alcohol abuse without being, or becoming, and alcoholic. When you abuse alcohol, you are misusing it, and not drinking responsibly. Unfortunately, people do this all the time. They believe that there's no harm in drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. This is because the perception of alcohol is that it is much safer than many other substances on the market.
You may be abusing alcohol without realizing it. It's possible that you're just not sure how much alcohol is too much. If you are participating with alcohol abuse, you are most likely going to show some signs of it.
Some common signs of alcohol abuse include:
If you have experienced any of these, you may be abusing alcohol.
It's not always easy to know if you have an alcohol addiction or not. Most people who drink feel as though they're in control of their alcohol use. They may know that they drink too much, but they still feel as though their consumption is under control. This might be the way that you feel as well.
You can get a better grasp on whether or not you have an alcohol addiction by answering some questions. The following are questions that a professional might ask you about your alcohol use.
It can be difficult to face some of the answers to these questions. Still, they need to be asked. If you can answer "yes" to more than one of them, you most likely have an alcohol addiction. If so, it's a condition that needs professional treatment.
There are certain signs you can look for in your own life that can tell you if you're an alcoholic. If you notice even one of these signs, it's possible that you're struggling with alcoholism.
It's very easy to go from alcohol abuse to alcoholism. If you can relate to any of these, you may have already gone down that path.
If you are still not sure, there is a way to get more information about your own alcohol use. You may find it to be very helpful to take an alcoholism quiz. This quiz will ask you some difficult questions, but be honest. You'll get your results right away, and they will guide you as to what your next steps should be.
One of the issues is that most people don't know how much alcohol is too much. This means that you could be inadvertently drinking too much just from lack of knowledge.
According to Harvard Health, moderate drinking is acceptable for both men and women. For men, this means consuming one to two standard drinks per day. For women, it means consuming one standard drink per day.
A standard drink means:
Of course, this is a standard. There are those for whom even one drink per day isn't a good idea. This can include people who take blood thinners, or who have high blood pressure. It could also include people who have problems with their balance.
Anything over these accepted amounts is considered to be heavy drinking. Heavy drinking can lead to alcoholism when it is engaged in often enough. Also, binge drinking is a behavior that neither men, nor women should ever engage in. This is true even when binge drinking only occurs once a month.
Alcoholics frequently suffer from a number of different medical issues, and even mental problems. Excessive alcohol use is dangerous, and yet, alcoholics are usually unwilling to stop drinking.
If you are an alcoholic, you are at a very high risk of:
Your health is important. Every drink you consume brings you closer to any one of the issues on this list.
There are other devastating consequences of drinking alcohol excessively, as well. When you drink too much alcohol you may:
There are just so many risks associated with drinking too much alcohol. It's possible that you have even experienced one or more of these in the past. If you have, it's so important for you to stop drinking.
Every year, the National Institute on Drug Abuse releases a report regarding 10th and 12th graders and their drug and alcohol use. It is called, Monitoring the Future, and 45,000 students in private and public schools are surveyed. According to the most recent one from 2018, alcohol use by older adolescents has decreased. In some of the age groups in the survey, it is the lowest it has ever been.
Binge drinking may be a problem among adults, but it’s an even more serious problem among teenagers. That is the primary way they consume alcohol. Teens who do it put themselves at risk of driving recklessly, and they are much more likely to speed and get into accidents. They also have a higher risk of alcohol poisoning and death.
The Washington Post posted an article regarding pediatricians’ thoughts about the declining numbers. While they are promising, there is still so much more work that needs to be done to keep the number of teens using alcohol down. It is much more dangerous for teens to drink. It impacts their brain development, along with putting them at risk for serious injuries or even death.
If you have a loved one who is an alcoholic, your heart probably breaks for that person. Alcoholism can be a hard topic to bring up with someone you love.
Your family member may become angry, and even refuse to talk with you about it.
When you bring it up, be prepared with research. Talk about the effects of alcoholism, and state the fact that you're concerned. If nothing changes, you may want to consider an intervention as your next step.
Sometimes those loved ones battling alcoholism are teenagers. Far too many parents have to deal with this problem under their own roofs. If this is your situation, it's important that you know what to do.
It might help you to follow these guidelines:
Alcoholics should never stop drinking on their own. Alcohol is a powerful drug that is often misunderstood. If you are an alcoholic, your body has gotten used to having alcohol regularly. This means that you will go through withdrawal when you stop drinking.
You may think that you know exactly what alcohol withdrawal is. However, it is much worse than what you experience when you wake up in the morning. Alcohol withdrawal can be dangerous, and it can have devastating, and even fatal consequences.
Delirium tremens is a condition that can occur when you stop drinking alcohol. Some people are more at risk for DTs than others.
The symptoms of delirium tremens can begin very abruptly, and without warning. They usually start within 96 hours. However, they have been done to begin as long as 10 days after the last drink.
The DTs is an emergency situation. If you experience them, getting medical help immediately is crucial. Delirium tremens can become fatal if not treated right away.
At Northpoint Seattle, we know just how serious alcoholism is. We also know how hard it is to come to terms with the fact that you need to get help. We want you to know that we are here to provide you with the support you need.
Our outpatient rehab is known as one of the best in the State of Washington. It is a comprehensive program that is tailored to meet the needs of every client we serve. We offer varying levels of treatment, based on what our clients need. We have a more traditional outpatient program, an intensive outpatient program and partial hospitalization.
At Northpoint Seattle, we have two locations – one in Bellevue and one in Seattle, Washington. We also accept many different health insurance plans. That allows us to keep costs as low as possible for our clients. We know affordable treatment is important, and we want to be able to offer it to you.