Understanding the Stages of Alcoholism
There are many beliefs as to how alcoholism sets in, with a growing number of people accepting that this is a disease.
There are multiple stages of alcoholism, all of which can be pinpointed if a person is facing an addiction.
While it is not always easy to determine if somebody is addicted to alcohol, there are four stages to be aware of:
- Early stage. This is marked by an increased tolerance and physical changes, which are mostly hidden. During this stage, the brain becomes more tolerant to alcohol, meaning that the person must consume more to achieve the desired result.
- Middle stage. It can be difficult to determine the line between the early and middle stage, but there are some characteristics to be aware of.The pleasure associated with drinking during the early stage is now being replaced by consumption meant to deal with issues caused by prior drinking or other life issues, such as job related stress.
- Late stage. Also referred to as the deteriorative stage, this is when the negative effects on the mind and body are evident, as physical symptoms make their way to the forefront.Somebody who reaches this stage is faced with a variety of physical and psychological problems, due largely to the fact that vital organs have been damaged.
Treatment. While quitting alcohol can be accomplished at any stage, many never consider this until they enter the late stage of alcoholism. This is when they, as well as those around them, may realize that professional help is necessary.
While some people attempt to quit alcohol cold turkey, those who have reached the late stage of alcoholism will have a better chance of success by checking into a rehab facility. With professional help, it is easier to overcome an addiction and avoid future trouble (such as a relapse).
When somebody finds him or herself in the third stage of alcoholism, it is important that the next step be the acceptance of rehab. Without rehabilitation, there is a good chance that the problem will continue for many years to come, causing harm along the way.
If you understand the stages of alcoholism, it is easier to decide if you or a loved one is dealing with this disease. Furthermore, it makes it easier to decide on an acceptable treatment schedule that can yield results.