The consumption of alcohol is at the center of many social activities and is considered a normal part of life. However, drinking too much can be a sign of developing an addictive behavior known as alcohol use disorder (AUD).
AUD can be defined as drinking too much to the point that it can harm your health. This usually looks like drinking excessive amounts of alcohol in a single session or having several drinks per day throughout the week.
It’s important to take a moment to familiarize yourself with AUD so you know more about the condition and finding treatment for it.
1. AUD affects millions of people every year
Recent research from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism found that 14.4 million adults ages 18 and older had AUD. This includes 9.2 million men and 5.3 million women.
A person is defined as having AUD if they experience at least two of the following 11 symptoms within the same year:
- Drinking more than planned
- Having built up a tolerance
- Unable to quit despite trying
- Withdrawals when trying to quit
- Constantly craving alcohol
- Seeking alcohol more often
- Missing work, school and other responsibilities due to alcohol
- Alcohol affecting one’s ability to perform important tasks
- Social and personal problems due to alcohol
- Drinking in risky situations, such as before driving
- Continued drinking that causes health problems
2. AUD has a number of causes
There are many causes and risk factors that can lead to AUD, including:
- Social influences — Being around friends and family who drink regularly can increase your risk of developing AUD.
- Trauma — Past trauma, such as emotional abuse, physical abuse or sexual abuse can lead to an increase in drinking to cope, which can cause AUD.
- Mental health disorder — People with mental health disorders, such as anxiety or depression, may turn to alcohol as a coping mechanism, which can cause AUD.
- Family history — Children in families with a history of alcohol abuse are more likely to develop AUD as they grow older.
3. AUD is treatable
Fortunately, AUD is treatable. However, to treat AUD, you need to visit recovery professionals for assistance. Without professional help for AUD, your continued drinking can lead to serious issues such as job loss, strained relationships with friends/family, and deterioration of health.
The majority of those experiencing AUD do not receive the treatment they need because of fear, shame, stigma, denial or lack of awareness. There is no shame in admitting you have a problem and turning to someone reliable for help. This is one of the bravest and best decisions you can make for yourself.
Take your first step to recovery at Tulip Hill Recovery
At Tulip Hill Recovery, we focus on discovering what factors in your life may be contributing to your alcohol abuse in order to treat addiction at its main source.
Are you ready to talk to someone about treatment for AUD and building a better future for yourself? Please contact us online or call us at 877-845-8192 to get in touch with our team and start your recovery journey.