Posted on: April 15th, 2024

Know the Signs, Receive the Help: Alcohol Awareness

By: Kaitlin Pilipovic, MS, LCAC

As April continues to unfold, let us take a moment to discuss a prevalent yet often hidden struggle: alcohol misuse and dependency. April is nationally observed as Alcohol Awareness Month and offers the opportunity to shed light on the impact of excessive alcohol use and provide resources and support to those affected. According to statistics from the CDC, approximately 178,000 alcohol-related deaths occur annually in the United States alone. That translates to 488 deaths per day or 20 deaths per hour, underscoring alcohol as one of the leading preventable causes of death in our country, trailing behind tobacco, poor diet and physical inactivity, and illegal drugs.

When you hear the word alcoholism, what picture comes to mind? Perhaps it’s the stereotypical image of a disheveled individual, clutching a bottle, barely able to stand. But this portrayal, often depicted in media, rarely scratches the surface of reality. Alcohol-related challenges permeate every corner of our society, affecting individuals regardless of age, gender, race, or socioeconomic status. Yet, it remains a topic that often stays in the shadows of shame. The stigma surrounding alcoholism is substantial, making it difficult for millions to acknowledge the problem or seek help.

Recognizing the signs is vital in helping oneself or a loved one. Have you noticed any of the following:

  • Drinking more or for longer periods than intended?
  • Trying unsuccessfully to cut down or stop drinking?
  • Needing to consume more alcohol to achieve the desired effect?
  • Continuing to drink despite negative emotional or physical consequences?
  • Spending excessive time consumed by thoughts of drinking?
  • Finding that drinking interferes with daily life, relationships, or work?
  • Facing legal issues due to alcohol consumption?
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when not drinking, such as anxiety, sweating, nausea, shakiness, irritability, insomnia, or headaches?

Treatment options for alcohol use disorder vary depending on individual needs, but there are numerous avenues available that pave the way to recovery. It is entirely possible to lead a fulfilling and healthy life beyond alcohol dependency.

If you or someone you know is seeking assistance for alcohol-related concerns, know that confidential and compassionate support is within reach. Reach out to Pillars for guidance and support on your journey towards wellness. Remember, you are not alone, and there is hope for a brighter tomorrow!

Pillars recently started an intensive outpatient program! Click here to learn more about it!