Spotting the difference: heavy drinker or alcoholic?

Alcohol Awareness Week LogoAlcohol Awareness Week aims to  encourage people to start talking about alcohol, about the health risks, social problems and how alcohol is ever-present in society.  As part of the Priory's support for Alcohol awareness, a number of addiction therapists have written articles on the many damaging effects of alcohol and alcoholism.  This article written by Ross Hoar, Lead Therapist at the Priory Hospital Southampton, looks at the transition from heavy drinking to alcoholism. 

Even if you do not have an addiction to alcohol, regular excessive drinking can have serious a long term effect on your health.

Essentially, alcoholism is characterised by a dependence in which you experience withdrawal symptoms if you are unable to consume a regular intake of alcohol.

Many people are still able to attend work or carry on their normal activities, but problems begin to surface as the effects of the addiction take hold.

Problem drinking is the stage before addiction takes hold. You continue to drink, even though it causes problems with relationships, your work life or finances. It is important to get help before problem drinking becomes an addiction.

Alcohol Awareness Week 2013 runs from 18-24 November.

Priory addiction therapists offer a free, no obligation assessment in which you can discuss your concerns in confidence; call us on 0845 277 4679 or fill in our online form.