Signs of Problem Drinking


Individuals struggling with problem drinking may experience one or more of the following:

  • Tolerance (more is needed to get the same effect).
  • Decreasing academic performance as a result of drinking.
  • Negative social consequences as a result of drinking.
  • Lifestyle changes to accommodate use.
  • Choosing friends based on drinking behavior.
  • Drinking alone.
  • Rationalizing alcohol use to friends.
  • Not remembering things one did while intoxicated.
  • Desire to control, or unsuccessful efforts to control excessive drinking.
  • Getting angry when confronted about drinking.

Symptoms of Alcohol Dependence

Neglect of Activities-Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of alcohol use;

Excessive Use-Alcohol is consumed in larger amounts over a longer period than intended;

Impaired control-Ongoing, unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control alcohol consumption;

Persistence of Use-Alcohol consumption is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely caused or exacerbated by alcohol;

Alcohol Related Activities-A great deal of time is spent in activities necessary to obtain, use or recover from the effects of alcohol;

Withdrawal-Withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, sweating, shakiness, and anxiety when alcohol use is stopped after a period of heavy drinking;

Tolerance-The need for increasing amounts of alcohol in order to feel its effects.

Academics and Alcohol

Some students may think that partying on the weekend has no negative effects on their academics as long as they leave time on Sundays to study. However, alcohol takes a long time to "clear" the system, and the effects of alcohol on the mind and body can last into the next day. This would make concentrating on a tough project or studying for an exam much more difficult