Problematic or dependent consumption of alcohol can be devastating, impacting everything that is important in life. Physical health, mental health, significant relationships, employment performance, and the self-relationship to name but a few. It can be characterised by an uncontrollable preoccupation and compulsion to consume alcohol. The physical and psychological withdrawal syndromes are significant maintaining factors.
If you are concerned about your alcohol consumption or a concerned family member or friend, and unsure of the extent of the problem and how to respond take this simple and confidential Alcohol Dependence Quiz.
If you have a developed dependence on alcohol, you may experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms if you suddenly stop drinking. It is not recommended that an individual who has developed a physiological dependence stops drinking, unless under medical supervision due to the risk of seizure or other medical complications. Withdrawal symptoms can be physical and psychological.
Physical alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:
Psychological alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:
Sometimes people drink to avoid these symptoms, a pattern known as ‘relief or maintenance drinking’. It can take between three months and a year to fully recover from the effects of alcohol withdrawal. Even then, the brain remains abnormally sensitive to alcohol. So, if you start drinking again, your tolerance to alcohol and withdrawal symptoms can come back within a few days after recurrence of consumption.
The loss of freedom and self-control is an inherent factor of alcohol dependence. Often there seems no way out of the cycle for either the individual concerned or their family. It may feel like you can’t stop, but with the right treatment and guidance, you can overcome an alcohol problem or addiction, and regain control of your life.Make Enquiry ▸
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