For way too many teens, there is a point where they realize that their drinking is out of control and they are forced to ask themselves: “Am I an alcoholic?”
It is not always easy to determine when a few drinks with friends at a party turns into a full alcoholic addiction. Alcoholism is more than social or binge drinking and refers to an alcohol addiction or dependence and refers to a situation in which the teen has a physical or psychological compulsion to drink alcohol.
Unfortunately, alcoholism does not come with a yes or no test. It looks and acts different from person to person and stereotypes do not always hold true. So, how is your teen to know when a few drinks with friends become a full-blown alcohol addiction? How do they know when to ask: “Am I an alcoholic?”
The following are some of the warning signs of alcoholism to look for that might help:
- Drinking when you are alone or keeping your drinking a secret
- Losing interest in other activities that were once enjoyable
- Craving alcohol
- Making drinking a priority over responsibilities, such as employment and family
- Showing alcohol withdrawal symptoms like sweating without reason, anxiety, etc…
- Extreme mood swings and irritability
- Feelings of guilt associated with drinking
- Starting your morning with a drink
- Continuing to drink even if negatively impacts your health, family, or finances
- Inability to stop or control the amount of alcohol you are consuming
If your teen is struggling with alcoholism, then please know that they are not alone. Thousands of people (no matter their age, status, culture, or education) struggle with drinking, ask themselves the question “am I an alcoholic,” and make the decision to seek help every day. We can help!