The stages of alcoholism

Can you recognize the different stages of alcoholism in yourself, your friends, or family members? If you are concerned about whether someone you know has an alcohol problem, it is important that you recognize the four stages of alcoholism so that you are able to help the person stop drinking and thus perhaps even save his or her life. Before we go through the specific stages of alcoholism, it’s important to know the difference between alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence.
Alcohol abuse : There are many signs and symptoms of alcoholism in the abuser, but the person does not feel compelled to drink.
Alcohol dependence : A person whose alcoholism has progressed to the stage of dependence no longer has control over drinking behavior, and has developed a tolerance to alcohol.
The four stages of alcoholism

STAGE ONE: Drinking as a cop-out

In the first stage of alcoholism, the person drinks to escape from reality. Alcohol helps the person to run away from tensions, fears and worries. A person in the early stages of alcoholism builds up an increasing tolerance towards alcohol and does not appear drunk to the outside world. The first stage of alcoholism is characterized by binge drinking, secret drinking, and refusing to talk about drinking.

STAGE TWO: Drinking becomes a necessity

In the second stage of alcoholism, the person is guided by an inner urge that is irresistible. A second-stage alcoholic may have a period of abstinence, but he or she will always resume drinking. The person in question will often deny that there is a problem through rational explanations. The strong desire for alcohol makes the person dependent on alcohol. During this second phase, the alcoholic may suffer from so-called blackouts and may exhibit aggressive behavior.

STAGE THREE: Drinking without control

During the first two stages of alcoholism, despite heavy alcohol consumption, the alcoholic usually still has some degree of control; however, at this stage, the person no longer has control over the use of alcohol. This is one of the easiest stages of alcoholism to recognize by family and friends because at this point, the person stops activities that were previously shared with others, as well as hobbies and activities that were previously enjoyed. . Any work starts to suffer, and he or she may also come into contact with the police or the judiciary. Despite all these consequences, the drinking will continue.

STAGE FOUR: Drinking due to total dependence

During the final stages of alcoholism, the alcoholic develops a total dependence on alcohol. The day usually starts with drinking, and the rest of the day is characterized by tremors, chills, binge drinking and frequent drinking in large quantities. The psychological conditions of chronic drinking begin to manifest such as: deteriorating brain functions, poor judgment, memory loss and weakened concentration. Someone in stage four of alcoholism has a high risk of liver damage, heart disease and oral cancer and/or esophageal cancer.
Recognizing the signs of the four stages of alcoholism allows you to help people in your immediate environment who may have or develop an alcohol problem. Whether it concerns yourself or someone close to you, if any of these stages of alcoholism manifest, seek help from a doctor or specialist with whom the problem can be discussed so that the problem can be resolved through appropriate treatment .

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