April is Alcohol Awareness Month. One very important thing that everyone needs to be aware of this month and throughout the year is whether they or someone they know may have a drinking problem. There are many ways you can tell if someone has a drinking problem, including yourself. Watch for the signs and take an interactive quiz. It may help save your life or the life of someone you care about.
Signs of an Alcohol Problem
To tell if someone has a drinking problem, pay attention to the tell-tale signs. While these don’t necessarily indicate an addiction, they can be a warning that the individual needs to seek help for their alcohol use.
- Every time something embarrassing or dangerous happens, they vow to quit drinking and yet they have not quit.
- Their social life revolves around alcohol, particularly whether there will be alcohol present at meals or events.
- They are chronically late or a no-show and this is a departure from their previous behavior.
- The individual tends to end up in risky situations, especially when drinking.
- Their personality is significantly different when drinking than when sober.
- They need to drink more to feel the effects, meaning they have built up a tolerance for alcohol.
- The individual experiences black outs or episodes of memory loss while drinking.
Medical Professionals’ Concerns
When you or someone you know works with a doctor to determine if there is a drinking problem, the medical professional will probably ask some questions about what has taken place over the past year, including whether the individual:
- Has spent a lot of time being sick from the aftereffects of drinking.
- Tried to stop drinking or reduce the amount or frequency but couldn’t do so on their own.
- Found that their drinking or the aftereffects of drinking has interfered with work, family, or other responsibilities or activities.
- Has wanted a drink so desperately that they could think of nothing else.
- Continues to drink alcohol even though it may be causing other mental or physical issues, such as anxiety or depression.
- Experiences withdrawal symptoms, including shakiness, nausea, restlessness, or trouble sleeping, when not drinking.
Take the AUDIT Quiz
The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) is an assessment tool for determining whether you or someone you know has a drinking problem. The quiz was developed based on data from a multinational World Health Organization (WHO) collaborative study. The AUDIT is accepted as an effective screening instrument for an alcohol use disorder. It is intended to be used primarily by healthcare providers but there is a self-administered version available online as well.
The AUDIT questions are designed to determine if someone has a drinking problem. The range of answers for most of the questions vary from “never” to “daily or almost daily.” The quiz questions are based on the definition of a single drink as a 12-oz beer, an 8 to 9-oz shot of malt liquor, a 5-oz glass of wine, or 1.5oz of hard liquor.
When taking the self-administered quiz online, you will receive your results along with a recommendation as to whether you need to seek treatment for your alcohol use. The recommendations will be based on the number of times you indicate you have had drinks as well as how often you experienced issues because of your drinking.
- Has a relative or friend or a doctor or another health worker been concerned about your drinking or suggested you cut down?
- How often do you have a drink containing alcohol?
- How often during the last year have you found that you were not able to stop drinking once you had started?
- How often do you have six or more drinks on one occasion?
- How many drinks containing alcohol do you have on a typical day when you are drinking?
- How often during the last year have you been unable to remember what happened the night before because you had been drinking?
- How often during the last year have you needed a first drink in the morning to get yourself going after a heavy drinking session?
- How often during the last year have you had a feeling of guilt or remorse after drinking?
- Have you or someone else been injured as a result of your drinking?
- How often during the last year have you failed to do what was normally expected from you because of drinking?
Contact South Miami Recovery for Help Now
If you’ve determined that you have a drinking problem, we can help. During Alcohol Awareness Month, and throughout the year, you can turn to the professionals at South Miami Recovery for help overcoming your addiction to alcohol or drugs. You deserve to enjoy true freedom from active substance dependency, so you can live a safer and healthier life.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we want you to stay safe and healthy, so we offer HIPAA-compliant telehealth services to help you get the treatment you need now. To learn more and to sign up for telehealth substance abuse services, contact us today. Call South Miami Recovery at 305.661.0055.