Research suggests that some high-functioning alcoholics never experience major problems, but they also never live life to their full potential. Functional alcoholics are more likely to participate in high-risk behavior, but they may be better at not getting caught high functioning alcoholic than others. Alcoholics have a stereotype, so friends, family members and co-workers might not recognize high-functioning alcoholics. In 2007,Columbia University researchers analyzed datafrom the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions.
In alcohol treatment, you’ll work with behavioral health and medical professionals who will help you address these challenges. You’ll begin healing from the mental and physical effects of addiction and learn a healthier way of life in sobriety. While these types of alcoholics may not struggle to hold down a job or maintain a relationship, long-term alcohol abuse will cause a range of health consequences. People who drink heavily for years on end increase their risk of developing certain cancers and liver disease. Are thought to comprise up to 19% of the U.S. population of people with alcohol use disorder.
When You're Ready to Seek Treatment
Strength, courage, and conviction serve as necessary traits for the battle against the grip of addiction. Witnessing a loved one’s drinking and the ramifications of their alcohol abuse can feel overwhelming and commingle with feelings of shame, fear, anger, or self-blame. Friends, co-workers and extended family may see ‘just an average person’. High functioning alcoholics live in denial and point to their career successes. If you don’t seek alcohol addiction treatment for your AUD, you’ll eventually lose your ability to function at a high level, and finally, at any level. One of the primary traits of a high-functioning alcoholic is that you hide the disease so well.
One of the hallmarks of addiction is a person’s fear of not being able to consume whatever their drug of choice is. For those who aren’t familiar with this disorder first-hand, when they hear the term “alcoholic,” they might picture someone unable to hold a job or maintain healthy relationships because of their drinking. But having alcohol use disorder doesn’t necessarily mean a person is unable to function in their daily life.
Engages in high-risk behaviors
The truth is that alcoholism is not a one-size-fits-all epidemic, and it looks different for every individual. https://ecosoberhouse.com/ Mental health professionals and addiction clinicians prefer to use the term alcohol abuse than alcoholism.
They may be able to go days or even weeks without drinking and without suffering from serious alcohol withdrawal symptoms. One in four people who drink at those levels may already be considered functional alcoholics. Recognize the alcoholism signs listed above to help a loved one contact treatment centers as soon as possible, whether in a detox program, outpatient treatment, or individual therapy. These people are commonly referred to as high-functioning alcoholics, functional alcoholics or working alcoholics. A functional alcoholic might drink moderately throughout the day — never enough to get drunk but always enough to curb cravings and stave offalcohol withdrawal symptoms. Or they may remain sober throughout the day but binge drink at night or on weekends.
Signs and Symptoms of a High Functioning Alcoholic
However, some people may use the phrase to refer to individuals who are experiencing an AUD but are still able to successfully function in their work and personal lives. Unfortunately, being able to drink and still maintain their responsibilities doesn’t mean a person is free of alcoholism.
Outpatient programs make it possible for you to get treatment during the day and still live at home. Their life seems to be falling apart, but they continue drinking to help with other areas of life where it seems to be helping. They may continue drinking even after others recognize signs they should stop drinking or slow down. Even when someone appears to live a structured, productive life, they can still depend on alcohol in unhealthy ways.