What is Alcohol Addiction?

Alcoholism CounsellingAlcoholism is a chronic disease that needs to be properly treated due to the significant mental and physical risks. Alcoholism is when the body becomes dependant on alcohol and experiences withdrawal without it. It is the most severe form of alcohol abuse.

Alcoholics will usually see their quality of life deteriorate and their surrounding relationships be effected. Alcoholic counselling is an essential part to recovery and understanding why the issue started in the first place.

What are the signs and symptoms?

Although the symptoms of alcoholism vary for everyone, there are common signs to watch out for:

  • Hiding alcohol consumption
  • Physical symptoms of alcohol withdrawal
  • Other withdrawal symptoms
  • Planning ahead to ensure alcohol is accessible wherever you are
  • Taking your own alcohol to places
  • Not being able to function without it
  • Blacking out
  • Legal problems
  • Relationships effected due to drinking
  • Extreme mood swings
  • When drinking is more important than anything else
  • Obsessively thinking about drinking
  • High tolerance of alcohol
  • Continuing to drink in the face of adverse consequences
  • Weight loss or tiredness

What causes this?

There can be many factors that cause alcoholism. It can be a genetic disorder or something that develops/worsens over time. Often using alcohol is a way to cope with other underlying issues, which is why it is a way for people to ‘escape’ or ‘avoid’ issues. This is known as an opt-out behaviour. We tend to opt-out when we are triggered in an emotional or painful way.

How can I get help?

Sometimes support groups or a treatment program end up reinforcing maladaptive thinking or behaviour. At Shift, we would identify those underlying issues known as Limiting Beliefs. These are deep-rooted beliefs that can lead to substance use for certain people as a way to cope. By getting identifying the root of the issue and targeting that specifically, the mental and emotional urge to use alcohol will decrease.