What is Alcoholism?

man in need of alcoholism rehabAlcoholism is a term to define alcohol addiction or dependence. Its characteristics include the compulsive and self-destructive use of alcohol. Patients who suffer from alcoholism are incapable of controlling their consumption of alcohol. Due to their strong affinity to drink, many other aspects of their lives will suffer. It’s because of this that alcoholism rehab is necessary for many.

The American Psychiatric Association gave alcoholism the label of disease. In fact, it’s the third most common mental illness in the US. It’s an allergy of the body and obsession of the mind. It lies deep within the mind of the alcoholic and often requires intervention and alcohol addiction treatment. Punishment and tough love are rarely ever enough. Alcoholism rehab is what many alcoholics require to find recovery and remain sober.

Alcohol addiction ruins many aspects of an individual’s life. These aspects can include relationships, careers, families, and mental and physical health. No matter how badly an alcoholic may want to quit, their will-power alone is rarely enough to make them quit for good.

Whether an alcoholic is celebrating their greatest victory or dealing with insurmountable heartbreak or regret, they will feel the urge to drink. The old stereotype of the man drinking out of the paper bag underneath a bridge is old and outdated. Alcoholism does not discriminate and spans across all demographics.

While drinking is a normally acceptable part of our culture, there are millions of Americans who struggle with alcoholism every day and do not seek help for their condition. Prolonged alcohol abuse carries a long list of physical and mental side effects that can ruin someone’s life, if they go untreated.

Signs you need Alcoholism Rehab

  • Frequent black-outs
  • Inability to control their alcohol consumption once they start drinking
  • Frequently drinking and driving
  • Loss of attention towards professional and personal responsibilities
  • Erratic and/or more violent behavior
  • Isolating from friends and family to hide their drinking
  • Severe uneasiness if refraining from alcohol

Long-Term Effects of Alcoholism

  • High blood pressure
  • Sexual problems
  • Liver disease (cirrhosis, cancer or alcoholic hepatitis)
  • Heart disease (hypertension, heart attacks)
  • Digestive problems (gastritis or pancreatitis)
  • Cancer (digestive tract, stomach, breast or liver)
  • Brain disorders (dementia, stroke)

What is the Difference Between Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism?

Both do involve the excessive drinking, but there is sometimes a fine line between the two. Many people have gone through bouts of heavy drinking, but the vast majority of them will make some improvements if needed. They may find themselves engaging in risky and maladaptive behavior due to their drinking, but they often make right and take care of their daily obligations and refrain from drinking too much or even stop altogether if necessary.

Simply put, an alcoholic is someone who is incapable of controlling their consumption of alcohol. They will more often than not overshoot the mark. For them, one drink is too many, and a thousand is never enough. It is a progressive disease and takes over some quicker than others. If left untreated, things will only get worse, never better.

Some people go through bouts of hard drinking but do not fall into this category. Sometimes people will go through some hard times in their lives where they will turn to the bottle to cope with their feelings, and some may even turn around from this. The true alcoholic suffers from a disease that prevents them controlling their consumption, and they will continue to drink heavily no matter the cost.

“The staff at Morningside provides a safe and unique environment where healing could take place. I had never felt special or had self-worth, and the staff gave me the love, patience, and care I needed until I could find it for myself. My life today is one I dreamed of. I am an active participant! [sic] I am free! I have had a personality change through taking action and working hard that has enabled me to practice and learn faith, love, tolerance, self-worth, and integrity!” – Morningside Alumni

The Need for Alcoholism Rehab

Addiction to alcohol causes many mental health problems if it goes untreated. Alcohol abuse has links in a wide range of mental health problems including anxiety disorders, depression and personality disorders. According to the Mental Health Foundation, 65 percent of suicides have links to excessive drinking. Also, 70 percent of men who commit suicide consume alcohol before they commit the act.

Drinking is an acceptable part of our culture. This poses a major problem for alcoholics to admit there’s a problem. Often, alcoholics will even use this as justification. They may say “but everybody drinks” or “how else can I have fun.” The truth is drinking probably stopped being fun for them long ago and they refuse to admit there is a problem.

If you believe you can benefit from alcholism rehab, turn to the services at Morningside Recovery. Head to our online form or call 855-631-2135 today to begin your recovery journey.