Resources for National Alcohol Awareness Month
Have you ever overindulged and regretted it later? Although we live in a “more is more” culture where excess is celebrated, consuming too much alcohol can cause serious mental and physical damage. In recognition of National Alcohol Awareness Month, here are some resources and information for anyone who wants to learn more about the risks and treatment options.
What Are The Risks?
Excessive alcohol consumption has many adverse side effects, including liver disease, several types of cancer, and an increased risk of impaired driving injuries. Alcohol Use Disorder occurs when alcohol impairs the brain from controlling its alcohol consumption despite serious social or medical consequences.
The AUDIT, a short test developed by the World Health Organization, is an easy way to evaluate your drinking habits and risks.
Despite these statistics, unhealthy alcohol consumption is often dismissed as “normal.” Many Americans have unhealthy drinking habits and don’t even know it. In fact, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse estimates that roughly 10 percent of all children in the U.S. live with a parent who has serious alcohol use problems.
How Much Is Too Much?
Medical professionals agree that a healthy adult woman should consume no more than one drink a day or seven drinks in a week; a healthy adult man should consume no more than two drinks a day or fourteen in a week. Pregnant individuals should never drink, and many prescription medications should not be combined with alcohol. Drinking during the teenage years can interfere with normal brain development and increase the risk of injury and even death.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration offers an easy-to-use treatment services locator that finds qualified mental health practitioners in your area.
Wondering whether yourself or a loved one is consuming too much alcohol? Start by asking the following questions:
- Am I drinking to cope with my problems?
- Do I feel guilty about how much I drink?
- Am I always able to stop drinking when I want to?
- Do I drink in situations that are hazardous to my own safety and/or the safety of others?
- How would I know if my drinking was becoming a problem?
- Do I ever have a drink in the morning to get rid of a hangover or calm my nerves?
If the answer to any one of these questions is “yes,” then it may be time to seek advice or treatment from a trusted health care provider. Anyone can struggle to control their drinking, and everyone has the right to seek help.
Where Can I Get Help?
In addition to the resources above, Holy Family Institute offers several substance use treatment programs. If you or a loved one is coping with the effects of alcohol abuse, please use our online form to get in touch with one of our qualified therapists.