Alcoholism does not necessarily depict life in ruin. The fact about alcoholism is that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. It seems different to various people. People typically imagine an alcoholic as someone who is perpetually intoxicated, constantly has a drink in hand, and whose life looks to unravel, but that’s not always the case.
Even though they consume alcohol regularly, some people appear to be good and healthy. These individuals are classed as functional alcoholics. They appear to get along well, and alcohol use is not an issue. However, as we all know, looks can be deceiving.
What Exactly Is a Functional Alcoholic?
The National Institutes of Health has defined this as a subtype of alcoholism. These people, who account for around 19.5 percent of alcoholics in the United States, are often middle-aged, have stable employment, and are educated.
Alcoholics who usually function go about their regular lives. They may form positive relationships with others around them and carry out their tasks. They carry on with their regular lives and even prosper in their occupations. They look to be living extraordinary lives.
Is Functional Alcoholism Riskier?
What might be the issue if they can live their lives well? While they appear to be in control, drinking endangers them and everyone around them.
Working alcoholics do not consider themselves to be alcoholics in general. They fail to understand the consequences of alcohol in their lives and how consumption generates detrimental repercussions since they are not frequently confronted by family and friends and have the financial wherewithal to continue their lives. This makes the situation much more difficult.
A life dominated by alcohol is always influenced in some manner. Though it may not be evident now, and significant ramifications may wait until later, it will undoubtedly impact their lives in the long run.
Their health suffers from their alcoholism, and their lives are jeopardized. All the organs are damaged, including the heart, liver, kidneys, pancreas, and brain. Some people are also affected by cancer and cognitive decline as a result of it. It raises the risk of interpersonal violence, fetal alcohol syndrome, automobile accidents, and suicide.
Alcohol consumption can have unexpected consequences. It has an impact on both the mind and the body. They are distinguished from family members who show concern about their drinking habits by their denial of the problem.
The effects show themselves in numerous facets of an individual’s life. In any event, untreated alcoholism is dangerous, both for oneself and one’s relationships.
Symptoms of Functional Alcoholism
Several variables contribute to alcoholism, regardless of its form. It encompasses the home and work environment, stress, despair, and poor self-esteem. Alcohol addiction is also influenced by family history and genetic variables.
It is difficult to recognize the warning indications of alcohol misuse, just as with functional alcoholic behavior. Their capacity to function and do their tasks effectively dispels the notion that they are an “addict.” According to havenhouserecovery.com, here are some telltale characteristics of a functional alcoholic:
- Uncontrollable cravings
- Had been arrested for DUI (Driving Under Influence)
- Alcohol is required for relaxation.
- Obsessive thoughts about the upcoming drinking session
- Alcohol is not required.
- When confronted, they become enraged.
- Attempts to quit unsuccessfully
- Despite the sickness, he continues to consume
- Drinks above the daily or weekly limit
What Exactly Is Heavy Drinking?
It is characterized as drinking more than the body can endure. It’s more than four bottles per day or 14 per week for males and three bottles per day or seven per week for women. Anything you consume more than this puts your health in danger.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism describes heavy drinking as a routine that leads to a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08%, or 0.08 grams of alcohol per deciliter or more. This means an adult can have five to six drinks (male) and four to five drinks (female) in approximately two hours.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which conducts the annual National Survey on Drug Use and Health in America (NSDUH), explains heavy drinking as having five or more alcohol for men and four or more for women on the exact same occasion (i.e., at the same moment or within a few hours of each other) on at most one day of the month.
When Should You Seek Treatment?
Alcohol misuse manifests itself in various ways, many of which later lead to severe consequences. The ultimate essential and first step toward rehabilitation is admitting that there is a problem.
The therapy strategy is the same whether the alcoholic is functioning or not. It is always preferable to get treatment and be evaluated by specialists specializing in addiction. Treatment may include any of the following, depending on the degree of your alcohol problem and your unique needs:
- Outpatient programs – These entail receiving therapy throughout the day and then returning home.
- Inpatient Residential Programs – You will be supervised 24 hours daily in a certified institution.
- Aftercare – This is the help provided after the treatment program has been completed.
The phrase “high functioning alcoholic” is no longer used in the medical world. However, some people may use the phrase to refer to those who have AUD but can still function in their job and personal life.
Excessive alcohol consumption can negatively influence both short- and long-term physical and mental health. Early intervention can lower the likelihood of developing alcohol addiction.
It is critical to understand that AUD is a chronic but curable disorder. Early intervention and therapy can help minimize illness severity and avoid subsequent physical or mental consequences.