If you’re struggling with drinking, you are not alone. Alcoholism statistics show that over 14 million adults in the US struggle with some form of alcohol use disorder which can include binge drinking, alcoholism, and alcohol dependence. Alcoholism is costly for the country and the world, with alcohol misuse costing the country $249 billion annually and causing more than 200 different types of diseases and health conditions globally.1
At Banyan Treatment Centers, we understand how difficult alcoholism can be to deal with, and we offer treatment at our family of nationwide rehab facilities to help patients through alcoholism recovery. If you fear that your drinking has gotten problematic, don’t suffer in silence. We’re here to help you get and stay sober: 888-280-4763.
What Is Alcoholism?
Alcoholism is a disorder in which a person cannot limit their own drinking, is preoccupied with getting alcohol, or experiences withdrawal symptoms when they attempt to stop drinking.2 Alcoholism is a severe type of alcohol use disorder, which is the medical characterization of symptoms in which a person drinks to excess, drinks to feel normal, or is physically or mentally dependent on alcohol.
Alcoholism is often colloquially used to describe all levels of alcohol use disorder, including binge drinking, alcohol dependence, and other types of habitual or excessive alcohol consumption.
Binge drinking is one of the most common types of alcohol use disorder. The CDC defines binge drinking as consuming more than 4 drinks in one sitting or occasion for women and 5 or more drinks for men. Heavy drinking, on the other hand, is more than 8 drinks weekly for a woman or more than 15 for a man.3 The numeric differences between men and women are due to the differences in how men’s and women’s bodies synthetize alcohol.
Signs and Symptoms of Alcoholism
Many people who are living with alcoholism or alcohol use disorder try to ignore the severity of their problems. The overall social acceptability of heavy drinking, such as wine mom culture or college binge drinking culture, makes it easier than it should be for people to ignore the truth about their drinking. There are also people who may consider themselves high functioning alcoholics, denying the severity of their alcohol use disorder. Ignoring alcoholism won’t make it go away, it will only let the problem worsen. If you fear that your drinking has gotten problematic or you’re concerned about a loved one’s drinking, it’s important to reach out for help.
Common signs of alcoholism include:
- Feeling sick without having a drink
- Obsessing about finding your next drink
- Needing to drink just to feel normal
- Getting in legal trouble due to your drinking
- Choosing to drink over friends or family
- Often blacking out or losing control when drinking
- Feeling like you can’t stop when you’re drinking
- Drinking even when it’s unsafe, such as when driving
- Getting a DWI or DUI
- Needing more and more alcohol to feel its effects
- Spending a lot of time drinking, getting drinks, or recovering from drinking
Even if the people around you don’t openly condemn your drinking, your drinking is likely problematic. And even if you’re able to hold down your job, your alcoholism is still a problem that you need to address. The longer you engage in habits of alcohol abuse, the greater your risks of developing health problems, alcohol-related illnesses, and deadly consequences of alcoholism.
Alcoholism and all shades of alcohol use disorder aren’t just problems nationwide, they are worldwide problems. The following alcoholism statistics show how prevalent and dangerous alcoholism can be.
Shocking statistics on alcoholism:
- More than 10% of children in the US live with a parent who has alcohol problems4
- 5.9% of all global deaths in 2012 alone where attributed to alcohol consumption5
- Alcohol consumption is the third-leading preventable cause of death in the US1
- Drunk driving is responsible for 28% of all traffic related deaths in the country6
- Fetal alcohol syndrome affects an estimated 40,000 babies annually, or 1 in 100 births7
The Dangers of Alcoholism
Alcoholism is associated with many dangers, both immediate and long-term. The immediate dangers of heavy alcohol use include intoxication, legal troubles, and health problems or deadly risks from heavy inebriation that may cause a person to pass out and emesis while unconscious.
There are links between alcoholism and dementia and the effects of prolonged alcohol abuse on the skeletal and nervous system are being studied. Alcoholism is linked to over 200 health problems, many of which are preventable, and the longer a person drinks, the greater their risks.1
The dangers of alcoholism don’t just harm those who are drinking to excess. Alcoholism can harm family dynamics, increase domestic violence, and cause deaths through drunk driving. Fetal alcohol syndrome is also a damaging effect of alcoholism as drinking during pregnancy causes a wealth of lifelong health problems for babies of alcoholics.
Getting Alcoholism Treatment
Alcoholism is viewed as a disease, and like any disease or chronic condition, professional treatment is needed to overcome its challenges. At Banyan Treatment Centers, we offer alcoholism treatment for those who are ready to get and stay sober. Alcoholism treatment starts with alcohol detox and then progresses to inpatient care, PHP, IOP, and OP treatment paths. Each patient benefits from personalized alcoholism treatment, which is what we’re proud to offer at Banyan Treatment Centers. Contact our team today to begin your journey of sobriety. Call (855) 722-6926 now.