Stages Of Alcoholism
The consumption of alcohol is found in nearly every country today. The levels of consumption vary from just a drink occasionally with dinner to excessive daily consumption. It is important to realize that someone who limits their drinking to a few times a year should not be considered an alcoholic. Alcoholism is best defined as a disease that causes an impulse to drink excessively several more than once a week.
In Canada, the amount of alcoholism is no more than the rest of the world, but it is still a problem. It is estimated that 75% of the population does have some alcohol during the year. While this does not mean that this percentage of the population is an alcoholic, it does show the acceptance of alcoholic beverages as a whole. As people become more immune to the disorder, they need to drink more. This leads to severe medical and social problems. In order to determine better if someone has a drinking problem, one should be familiar with the different stages of the disease.
The first stage of alcoholism is called the Early-Stage. This is still early on in their drinking and can be hard to see at first. However, if someone continually needs to have alcohol in an effort to alter their mood, or escape from the problems that they are facing personally, at work, or within society, then this is a sign of entry-level alcoholism. A person with this early stage of alcoholism can usually function fairly well even when they have had a few drinks. However, a few drinks gradually increase to several more.
The next stage of alcoholism would be the middle level of alcoholism. This means that they have passed from having a few to drinking several times a week for the purpose of getting drunk. A person at this stage will also start drinking earlier in the day rather than waiting for the evening or going to the closest bar. A good indicator is someone who actually carries alcohol with them or has several bottles "stashed" in their desk, in their car, or in a place that they frequently go to be by themselves.
This stage of alcoholism is very dangerous to both the person and their family. This is where they begin to slip deeper into their alcoholic need and begin to drink steadily. Their body does not handle the excess alcohol which then produces medical problems, loss of appetite, mood swings, and loss of inhibition. This person begins to break down emotionally, financially, and relationally. Once these signs exhibit treatment must be started quickly.
The last stage is the stage of full-blown alcoholism. Drinking is no longer something that they can control, and it takes over all aspects of their lives. The person begins to experience blackouts , prolonged sicknesses, and stomach problems. After a prolonged period of time, these medical problems continue to escalate to liver failure, heart disease and eventually death.
These different stages are all marked by progressing degrees of body condition and actions. As someone continues to delve further into their alcoholism their personality changes, nothing is as important as the next drink, and their body cannot continue the abuse. Once a person sees the signs of alcoholism, no matter what stage it is, intervention, and treatment should be initiated.