What to do if you think you are drinking too much alcohol
For many people, it is difficult to know if they are drinking too much alcohol. You might have had too much even if you are not feeling drunk. Therefore, if you want to know if you are drinking excessively, it would be a good idea to keep a diary of what you consume over a set period of time. Here is some advice on how to monitor yourself and what to do if you think you have a drinking problem.
Moderate drinking is classified as having no more than two units per day for women, and a maximum of three units a day for men. Also, you should make sure that you have a minimum of two alcohol-free days every week. If you consume spirits, always use a measure – it's very easy to be too liberal without one. Even if you follow these rules, remember that you may not be in a competent state to drive a vehicle.
A pregnant woman should not exceed 1-2 units a week. Drinking more than this during pregnancy may result in the infant being born with a disorder called FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome). This can cause defects in the central nervous system, inhibit growth, a malformation of the face, or a low IQ. Most medical doctors advise pregnant women to avoid alcohol completely.
Another frequently asked question is: "Surely, if I don't get drunk, I do not have a problem?" The answer to this is, "not necessarily". If your system has a high alcohol tolerance, you could experience a false sense of soberness. Sometimes, the opposite occurs, i.e. you need a lot of alcohol to get drunk – this indicates that you have a low alcohol tolerance or you are indeed drinking too much.
If you think have a drinking problem, you may need professional assistance because it can be difficult to do it on your own. Your doctor can help by giving advice and perhaps some medication. In the case of a person who drinks heavily, he or she will certainly need assistance from an organization or counseling program such as Alcoholics Anonymous.
If you are not dependent on alcohol, but would like to reduce the amount you consume, there are a few ways you can do this. Firstly, get the right mindset and, during the early stages, stay away from environments that could test your willpower. Going to a party is not going to help your cause. You first have to master the art of moderate drinking at home before you socialize.
Here are some suggestions. If you can, stop drinking alcohol during the week. Instead of going to meet your friends at a bar after work, rather go and visit your family. When you go out on the weekends, substitute every second alcoholic drink with a soft drink or non-alcoholic beer. If you do not succeed in becoming a moderate drinker in this manner, this might indicate that you do, in fact, have an addiction problem that should be referred to a professional.