Physical Dependence as a Sign of Alcoholism

Physical Dependence as a Sign of AlcoholismWhen people become physically dependent upon alcohol, they risk some serious health consequences. In addition to liver damage and malnutrition, it is likely alcoholics have a strong emotional addiction that needs professional treatment. In short, any signs of physical dependency should compel users to seek both physical and psychological treatment for addiction.

Signs of physical dependency indicate that someone suffers from alcoholism. This disease produces a number of physical symptoms, both while the addict is addicted and while she attempts to get sober. When an alcoholic goes long enough without a drink, she will experience any number of withdrawal symptoms, including the following examples:

  • Anxiety
  • Trembling or “the shakes”
  • Sweating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sleeplessness
  • Depression
  • Quick mood changes
  • Tiredness
  • Appetite loss
  • Headaches

In more severe cases of physical dependence, withdrawal symptoms may call for immediate medical attention, especially the following problems:

  • Hallucinations
  • Confusion
  • Seizures
  • Fever
  • Agitation

If you or a loved one endures any of these issues because he has not had a drink, then you should seek professional rehab as soon as possible.

How Alcoholism Damages Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the US excessive alcohol consumption is the third leading cause of death that is related to lifestyle, as it is responsible for 80,000 deaths annually. Excessive drinking may include binge drinking (5 or more drinks in a sitting for a man and 4 or more for a woman); while individuals who binge drink may not be alcoholics, they can suffer from alcohol poisoning. Alcohol poisoning stems from an extremely high blood alcohol level that can lead to loss of consciousness, low blood pressure and body temperature, coma, respiratory depression or death. Seek immediate medical attention for someone who is passed out or is having trouble breathing.

Long-term drinking causes chronic conditions that aren’t necessarily related to withdrawal symptoms. According to the CDC, the following conditions may stem from excessive drinking:

  • Neurological effects (dementia, stroke and neuropathy)
  • Cardiovascular problems (hypertension, heart attack, heart disease and irregular heart beat)
  • Psychiatric problems (depression, anxiety and suicide)
  • Cancer (mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, colon and breast), also includes increased risk of cancer overall
  • Liver disease (alcoholic hepatitis and cirrhosis)
  • Gastrointestinal problems (pancreatitis and gastritis)

The problems of alcohol abuse are too great to risk, so get help today to overcome this problem.

Help Finding Treatment for Alcoholism

If you need help finding treatment for alcoholism, call our toll-free helpline today. Treatment is crucial, and the disease responds best to medication and talk therapy. We are available 24 hours a day, so call us now to get started on a treatment plan and healthy lifestyle.