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The Truth Behind Elderly Alcoholics

The Truth Behind Elderly Alcoholics

Alcoholism does not discriminate, yet senior alcoholism is rarely ever discussed.

Alcohol abuse in older adults is a common issue in the U.S. that has unfortunately received very little attention. Alcohol is one of the most common forms of substance abuse among adults that are 65 and older.1 The 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that more than 1 in 10 seniors abused alcohol and 1 in 40 senior citizens reported heavy drinking within the past month. Also, 1.6% of seniors in the U.S. have been diagnosed with alcohol abuse disorder.2

At our rehab center in Philly, we know a lot of people don’t know the truth behind elderly alcoholics. Alcoholism is a prevalent and terrifying disease that traps many older adults. That’s why we provide addiction treatment to help those struggling with alcoholism get sober.

What Are the Signs of Alcohol Abuse in Older Adults?

Some symptoms of alcoholism in senior citizens go unnoticed because they are often dismissed as symptoms of old age. The effect of alcoholism on the elderly can vary in intensity and can worsen any preexisting conditions or cause new ones.

The signs of alcohol abuse in older adults include:

  • Short Term Memory Loss
  • Bloodshot Eyes
  • Severe weight loss or weight gain
  • Isolating themselves from friends and family
  • Aggression
  • Irritability
  • Making constant excuses to drink
  • Spending time with people who encourage alcohol addiction
  • Depression

The symptoms of alcohol addiction in senior citizens can often be confused with other symptoms of old age, leaving them at risk of alcohol poisoning, and sometimes death. It’s important to learn the truth behind elderly alcoholics and be prepared to look out for any signs of it in older adults. To avoid the repercussions of senior alcoholism, individuals can enter a safe and effective mature track program at our rehab facility.

The effects of alcoholism are amplified in older adults because of the vulnerability of their health. Many senior citizens have preexisting conditions that can worsen or become life-threatening as a result of alcohol abuse. It’s horrible to watch a loved one suffer from alcohol addiction. No matter the age, Banyan Treatment Centers Philadelphia provides an alcohol addiction treatment that meets the needs of people who want to overcome alcohol abuse and make their recovery possible.

If you or a loved one are battling with substance abuse and need help, call us now at 888-966-9413

to learn more about our treatments.


  1. SAMHSA- NSDUH Annual National Report
  2. SAMHSA- Results from the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.