The fact that a 2017 study found that 1 in 8 people struggle with excessive alcohol use suggests that the problem is far more prevalent than the average person realizes. Considering that virtually every social situation imaginable is lubricated with alcohol, it is unsurprising that personal or professional intervention is often necessary when an individual’s drinking gets out of hand; whether that intervention comes from a friend, a family member or a Columbus rehab center, it can be hard to accept that alcohol use is out of control. Some problem drinkers find that identifying situations where alcohol abuse could be a problem beforehand makes it possible to curb or even eliminate drinking in those instances.
Controlling Alcohol Use at Professional Functions
Corporate events, holiday office parties or even visiting the bar after work can lead to excessive drinking. However, consuming too much alcohol at a work-related event can not only leave coworkers and managers with a negative impression of those who drink too much, but it can impact future career opportunities. When required to attend a work event that will serve alcohol, allying oneself with a coworker who also needs to avoid drinking may help both parties limit or even eliminate alcohol use.
Avoiding Alcohol Abuse on the Road
Traveling for business or personal reasons has the potential to be an exciting experience that allows visitors to any given city to see new things, eat new food and make new friends. However, alcohol abuse often happens in these new situations for a variety of reasons, including travel anxiety. Those with families at home are also prone to excessive drinking because they miss their spouses, children and normal routines. Those with addiction issues who are concerned about staying sober during travel may want to find a meeting on the road if they are in a 12-step program or plan to visit healthy environments, such as the gym, if they are not program people.
Holiday Stress and Excessive Drinking
Alcohol consumption tends to skyrocket over the holiday season; beginning with the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving and often continuing through the second day of January, drinking is present in nearly every social setting. While seasonal drinking certainly increases due to parties and other forms of entertainment, the stress of the season is also a factor in how much alcohol is consumed. From busy schedules and visiting relatives to concerns about money and the urge to make everything perfect for the holidays, alcohol abuse increases at the end of the year. A good way to limit drinking during the season is to plan both carefully and early. Scheduling the events that surround the holidays can typically occur months ahead of time, and those with financial concerns may be able to alleviate that issue by budgeting a specific amount of money to set aside for gifts and other seasonal expenses.
If visiting relatives are the cause of excessive alcohol use during the holidays, consider scheduling personal time away from home; this way, every member of the family can unwind in his or her own favorite and healthy fashion. Similarly, grandparents, aunts, uncles and other special relatives are often more than willing to spend time with the children in the family, making it even more feasible for mom or dad to slip out of the house and into a relaxing, sober activity.
Drinking at Home
While many adults enjoy a glass of wine or a beer at the end of a long day on the job, drinking at home can be dangerous to those who do it to excess. Those who abuse alcohol while living in a home with others often find themselves damaging personal relationships, while individuals who live alone run the risk of injuring themselves while intoxicated. If drinking at home is a problem, one of the quickest ways to eliminate the issue may be to forbid alcohol in the house. Whether an excessive drinker is addicted to alcohol or not, removing the temptation entirely effectively stops habitual, at-home alcohol abuse.
Seek Help if Necessary
While some problem drinkers are undoubtedly alcoholics, others may find that their abuse is limited to certain situations. Because alcoholism is a disease, there are many options available to those who believe that their drinking is out of control. From inpatient rehab and 12-step meetings to simply changing routines and making new friends, reducing or eliminating a dependence on alcohol is possible. Always seek professional advice when concerned about problematic drinking behaviors.