What Is Alcoholism?
Alcoholism is also known as alcohol dependence and alcohol use disorder. It occurs when you drink so much that your body eventually becomes dependent on or addicted to alcohol. When this happens, alcohol becomes the most important thing in your life. Symptoms of alcoholism.
People with alcohol dependence will continue to drink even when drinking causes negative consequences, like losing a job. They may know that their alcohol use negatively affects their lives, but it’s often not enough to make them stop drinking.
Some people may drink alcohol to the point that it causes problems, but they’re not physically dependent on alcohol. This is sometimes referred to as alcohol abuse.
What Causes Alcoholism?
What Are the Risk Factors for Alcoholism?
What Are the Symptoms of Alcoholism?
Definition of Alcoholism and of Being an Alcoholic
Self-Testing: Am I an Alcoholic?
Sometimes it can be hard to draw the line between safe alcohol use and alcohol abuse or dependence. The Mayo Clinic suggests that you may have a problem with alcohol if you answer “yes” to some of the following questions:
Do you need to drink more in order to feel the effects of alcohol?
Do you feel guilty about drinking?
Symptoms of drinking rotten milk
Do you become irritable or violent when you’re drinking?
Do you have problems at school or work because of drinking?
Do you think it might be better if you cut back on your drinking?
Your doctor or healthcare provider can diagnose alcoholism. They will do a physical exam and ask you questions about your drinking habits.
Your doctor may ask if you:
have missed work or have lost a job as a result of your drinking
need more alcohol to feel “drunk” when you drink
have experienced blackouts as a result of your drinking
have tried to cut back on your drinking but could not
Your doctor may also use a questionnaire that assesses alcoholism to diagnose your condition.
Symptoms of drinking wine
Typically, a diagnosis of alcoholism does not require any other type of diagnostic test. There is a chance your doctor may order blood work to check your liver function if you show signs or symptoms of liver disease. Alcohol abuse can cause serious and lasting damage to your liver. Your liver is responsible for removing toxins from your blood. When you drink too much, your liver has a harder time filtering the alcohol and other toxins from your bloodstream. This can lead to liver disease and other complications.