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Article Summary

Signs of Problem Drinking

Most students have used alcohol in one form or another. but many don't realize that young people can have a drinking problem.

20 Questions - Do You Have a Drinking Problem

  1. Do you lose time from classes due to drinking?
  2. Do you drink because you are uncomfortable in social situations?
  3. Do you drink to build up your self confidence?
  4. Is drinking affecting your relationships with friends?
  5. Do you drink alone?
  6. Do you drink to escape from studies or home worries?
  7. Do you feel guilty or depressed after drinking?
  8. Does it bother you if someone says that maybe you drink too much?
  9. Do you have to take a drink when you go out on a date?
  10. Do you get along better with other people when you drink?
  11. Do you get into financial troubles over buying liquor?
  12. Do you feel more important when you drink?
  13. Have you lost friends since you started drinking?
  14. Do you drink more than most of your friends?
  15. Have you started hanging around with a crowd that drinks more than your old friends?
  16. Do you drink until you just couldn't drink anymore?
  17. Have you ever had a complete loss of memory from drinking?
  18. Have you ever been to a hospital or been arrested due to drunken behavior?
  19. Do you turn off to any studies or lectures about drinking?
  20. Do you think you have a problem with alcohol?

If you answered yes to some of these questions, you have some of the symptoms that indicate a problem with alcohol. Remember, there is no intelligent reason to deny that you have a health problem. If you think you do have a problem, the most important thing is to do something about it!

Alcohol abuse is a problem that can affect people of any age. Here are some additional signs that someone has a problem with alcohol, adapted from the Alcohol Education and Training Program, Rutgers University.

Additional Signs of Problem Drinking

  • Family or social problems associated with drinking.
  • Hiding liquor.
  • Lying about drinking (minimizing the number of drinks or the fact of drinking at all).
  • Making promises about drinking to oneself or others ("to cut down on drinking," "to be more careful," etc.).
  • Drinking to escape from pressure or to solve life's problems.
  • Feeling guilty after drinking or regret over what was done while drinking.
  • Getting drunk even when intending to stay sober.
  • Friends sometimes express concern over the amount of drinking one does.
  • Significantly increased tolerance to alcohol (early indication of problem drinking).
  • Drinking capacity, once big, is now dropping (later indication of problem drinking).
  • "Blackouts"--not recalling the drinking episode.
  • Increased absenteeism and lateness (job or classes).
  • More susceptibility to accidents and illness.
  • Preoccupation with drinking.
  • Marked changes in behavior or personality when drinking.
  • Getting drunk frequently.
  • Gulping drinks.
  • Academic or job difficulties related to drinking.

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