Signs of Alcohol Abuse Over The Holidays

Signs of Alcohol Abuse During the HolidaysIn many cultures, holiday celebrations are centered around eating and drinking with family and friends. It’s normal and even expected to indulge in all sorts of special foods and beverages that we might not enjoy at any other time of year, and sometimes even overdoing it is understood and excused as something that just happens as part of the whole holiday experience. This frame of specialness and celebration, however, can be a mask for burgeoning addiction problems. How can you tell if you or someone you love is simply overdoing the holiday cheer, or if he or she is developing an alcohol abuse problem?

Signs and Symptoms of Addiction

Sometimes the signs and symptoms of an alcohol abuse problem are subtle and seem to creep up on you, but more commonly the indicators are present and noticeable. If you or a family member shows any of these signs, consider seeking professional help.

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Social drinkers may occasionally overindulge, especially during the holidays. When they do so, you may see a slight change in personality while he or she is drunk, but that change is typically just an exaggeration of his or her normal personality traits. Usually social drinkers realize they have had too much and choose not to drive home. The next day when confronted about their behavior, they remember what they said and did – and often are genuinely remorseful. Despite feeling embarrassed, they typically admit they overdid it and change their behavior.

What You Can Do

If you recognize yourself in some or all of the above signs of alcohol abuse, don’t panic. You can change your behavior and avoid catastrophic consequences of your drinking. It is a myth that people only stop drinking after they hit “rock bottom” – many people stop or change their drinking behavior long before serious crises result.