Alcohol addiction is more common than you might think, especially since the many misconceptions around the topic can confuse us.
While alcoholism might be easy to point out for some, there’s a chance that alcohol problems are overlooked because of the many myths that so many people still believe. Today, our goal is to clear up some misconceptions about alcohol abuse through this article and debunk these five common myths.
Alcohol Addiction Only Hurts the Person Drinking
While addiction affects the person who is experiencing it first-hand, there are many cases where those close to the addict will suffer in one way or another. Often, alcoholics will begin to push their friends and family away, sometimes becoming irritable, angry, and in the most severe cases, violent. Spouses and children are typically the ones most affected, but if the addict is not in a relationship or has no children, it’s most likely that the person they are closest to is pushed away.
If you have a close friend or family member struggling with alcohol addiction, do your best to continue to be there for them and assist them in finding help along the way. In addition to counseling programs for addicts, there are also programs for the loved ones of an addict. If you need help coping, seek out help for yourself immediately.
- It’s Not Considered Alcohol Abuse If Your Not Drinking Everyday
You might think that drinking every day might be the determining factor of whether or not someone is considered an alcoholic. But that’s just another myth that has been proven to be false. While many addicts do drink every day, some addicts can avoid drinking daily and binge drink every so often. Binge drinking is still a significant problem for alcoholics. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), “heavy drinking” can be determined by the number of drinks consumed in a day or over a week, meaning someone classified as a heavy drinker doesn’t have to drink every day of the week. The NIAAA defined heavy drinking as follows:
- For men, consuming more than four alcoholic drinks on any day or more than 14 drinks per week is heavy drinking.
- For women, consuming more than three drinks per day or more than drinks per week is heavy drinking.
- It’s considered heavy drinking for any single person that has participated in binge drinking on five or more days in a single month.
- Alcoholics Just Need More Willpower
While this might be one of the more common misconceptions, it’s also one of the most harmful ones. For many people, alcoholism is not a choice once the habit has developed. Of course, there is always the choice to seek out help and get sober, but once the dependency is created, it can feel like you have no choice in the matter. Self-control is not the only thing that will help someone get clean; instead, someone who struggles with alcoholism needs outside help and a support system. Simply choosing to stop drinking is not enough for an alcoholic. If you have a friend or family member struggling with alcoholism, be there to support them and be an influence of good in their life.
- Alcohol Addiction Doesn’t Apply Depending on the Type of Alcohol
It is often said that alcoholism doesn’t apply to people if they only drink beer and wine, as opposed to hard liquor. They might think this because the alcohol content is much lower in these types of drinks; however, it’s vital to understand that it’s not about what a single person drinks but how the alcohol affects their lives. Alcohol, no matter how small or large in quantity it is, can still cause dependence. Any beverage containing alcohol can be addictive and lead to further abuse.
- Alcoholism Only Affects Certain Types of People
It’s all too common to think that alcoholism only affects people of a particular class, gender, age, or race. But the reality is that alcohol addiction can consume the life of anyone no matter what their background is. Alcoholism is found in many high-functioning people, young or old, male or female, black or white. When it comes to any form of addiction abuse and definitely alcohol abuse, no one is entirely safe from addiction.
Steps Recovery Centers for Treating Alcohol Addiction
If you or someone you love are struggling with alcohol addiction, don’t wait. Get in touch with Steps Recovery Centers to learn more about our recovery programs and services. We will be there to support you and give you all the knowledge you need to reach recovery successfully. If you’re ready to start a new, clean life free of alcohol dependence, contact us today. We have recovery centers in St, George, Utah County, and Salt Lake County, Utah.