Alcohol use disorder is the medical term for what many call alcoholism. This disorder is defined as a pattern of alcohol use that indicates difficulty in controlling what you drink.
Like any addiction, those suffering from alcohol use disorder continue to drink despite harmful consequences.
Fortunately, there are plenty of reasons to get treatment. Here are five important ones:
1. Alcoholism Impacts Your Relationships
You may not see it, but alcoholism has an impact on your life and affects how people see you. Repeated heavy drinking can damage relationships over time.
Due to changes in your behavior when you drink, you may neglect responsibilities or obligations that diminish relationships with your spouse, children, friends, or other loved ones. Relationships are hard to maintain, and you don’t want alcohol to be the force that brings them down.
2. Alcoholism Impacts Your Health
Drinking alcohol in excess puts you at risk for developing serious health conditions.
Some of these include:
- liver disease
- digestive problems
- heart conditions
- complications from diabetes
- eye diseases
- birth defects if you are pregnant
- bond damage
- neurological damage
- weakened immune system
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About 20 percent of people with alcohol use disorder develop alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Up to 15 percent have liver cirrhosis, although that number is likely higher because many cases go undiagnosed until an autopsy. Someone who develops liver cirrhosis and stops drinking increases their five-year survival rate by 90 percent.
3. Alcoholism Impacts Your Safety
Alcohol abuse impacts not only your safety, but the safety of your family and that of anyone around you. Drunk driving is the leading cause of highway deaths in the U.S.
Between 2016 and 2017, 11,000 people died because someone got behind the wheel after drinking alcohol.
Car accidents are not the only risk factor. People die in fires because they were drunk and never put out their cigarettes or candles. Children die because their parents were drunk and not watching them.
4. Alcohol Withdrawal Is Dangerous Without Medical Supervision
Quitting cold turkey without the medical management you receive at a treatment center can be deadly. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS) is dangerous.
AWS can lead to delirium Tremens (DT), which causes shaking, shivering, an irregular heart rate, and sweating. You may also experience hallucinations.
The most significant risk is high body temperature and seizures, which can lead to death. At the very least, withdrawal is uncomfortable. Receiving detox services allows you to go through it in a controlled manner with comfort care and supervision.
5. Alcohol Use Disorder Is Treatable
A proper treatment program provides you with therapeutic interventions and peer support that helps you in your recovery journey. Treatment also introduces you to other people experiencing many of the same challenges as you.
In some cases, medications may be used to help lower dependence and cravings. The Bluffs offers a medication-assisted treatment program to help you better manage alcohol use disorder and live a better life.
Rehab For Alcoholism At The Bluffs
Treatment programs at The Bluffs are evidenced-based and take place in a safe and private setting. We open the door to medically supervised detox, professional and peer support, and a host of evidence-based resources that will make your recovery journey go smoother.
If you or someone you love struggles with alcohol use, give us a call today to find out more about why treatment is the best option for you.
- Mayo Clinic — Alcohol Use Disorder
- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism — Alcohol Facts and Statistics
- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism — Classification of Alcohol Use Disorders
- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism — The Epidemiology of Alcoholic Liver Disease