There’s little wrong with a drink every now and then, be it with a meal, in a social situation, or because you like to indulge in a little, once in a while. However, as widely accepted and seemingly innocuous as it is, we all know that alcohol can become a serious danger. It can derail lives, destroy relationships, and cause serious health problems. But how do you know when drinking becomes a problem?

If it’s stopping you from your responsibilities

One of the clearest definitions of addiction is when your use of the substance in question starts getting in the way of other important parts of your life. This might include being too hungover to go to work, being drunk at times when are inappropriate, or even avoiding friends or family to instead indulge in drinking.


If you hide it from your loved ones

If you have started to lie to your loved ones or omit your drinking from them, then there may be shame at the core of it. You may already realize you have a problem but have simply yet to admit it if this is the case. Learning the words to admit a drinking problem to your loved ones might be able to help you make the first step to recovery.


If it’s affecting your mental health

Of course, long-term problem drinking can also lead to a range of broader problems that can affect your life. If you want to look after your mind, then making sure that you’re not causing it any undue problems is crucial. Alcohol might feel relaxing or pleasant while you’re drinking it, but it can, in the long term, contribute to anxiety, depression, and even self-harmful ideation. While alcohol is far from the only cause of these, if you feel particularly bad in these ways after sobering up, you may need help.


If you use it to cope

Alcohol is also often used to treat the kind of mental health concerns mentioned above. People will self-medicate to help alter their moods when they are feeling stressed, depressed, or in any other kind of way that they want to escape. If this is the case, you might want to look for an American Addiction Centers location. Not only can you get treatment for the alcohol dependency, but for the underlying emotional turmoil, too.


Whenever you think it’s becoming a problem

Even if none of the cases above sound like they fit you, wondering to yourself if you have a drinking problem is usually a sign, in and of itself, that you might want to seek some help. You can, for instance, make a call to an American Addiction Centers hotline to talk out what you are going through. An impartial, but compassionate professional may be a lot of help in figuring out what to do next.


Being able to see and admit that drinking alcohol has become a problem is the biggest and most important step you can take on the way to recovery.