Alcoholism is a devastating disease that is not always as obvious as people assume. Some people may appear to have a hold on managing their stressful jobs and responsibilities while consuming large amounts of alcohol on a regular basis. These people can be referred to as high-functioning alcoholics. They may have nice cars, a beautiful home and a healthy income, but they are not immune to the effects of alcohol.
In fact, high-functioning alcoholics can be more dangerous than any other kind, because they project the image that they are fine and capable. Thus, people are not cautious when they get into a car with a high-functioning alcoholic driving. A person does not know their pilot is nursing a hangover and not focused on flying or that the surgeon’s withdrawal is causing his hands to shake.
If you want to spot a functioning alcoholic, here are nine signs for which to watch out.
1. They forgo food for alcohol.,
Most alcoholics do not shoe interest in eating. They would replace their meals with a few drinks or use the meal as an excuse to drink. Look for someone who takes a few bites of food but a drinks gulps of alcohol.
2. No Signs of Hangover
When your body is dependent on alcohol, hangovers do not occur as often. A high-functioning alcoholic can drink several drinks without getting a hangover like an occasional drinker.
3. Irritable, uncomfortable and nervous when they are not drinking.
A high-functioning alcoholic’s body will react negatively when they have dry spells. Their body are dependent on alcohol’s sedative effects. When they have to abstain, their heart will beat rapidly, they will begin to sweat, and they become anxious.
4. Behavior is drastically influenced by alcohol.
You can notice a swift change in their behavior once they have consumed booze. For instance, a calm and kind person becomes aggressive.
5. Cannot limit themselves to a couple of drinks.
An alcoholic has no control over their drinking. Once they start drinking, they cannot stop. They are the ones that are always hollering one more round.
6. Loss of memory and frequent black outs.
When they are drinking, they may not recall what happen during that time.
7. Become aggressive when others talk about their drinking.
When someone wants to discuss their drinking, an alcoholic becomes aggressive or regress to denial.
8. Always have an explanation for drinking.
Some alcoholics use their “reasoning” to explain their drinking. They may blame their drinking on work stress, home stress or too many social activities.
9. They had their alcohol.
A high-functioning alcohol usually drinks alone or hide their drinking by sneaking around and doing it. When someone is hiding the amount of alcohol they drink, this is one of the biggest red flags that they are an alcoholic.
Keep yourself, your loved ones and trouble coworkers safe by looking for signs of alcoholism. If you know someone who may be suffering for alcoholism, please call the SAMHSA’s national helpline or your local health care professional. Help is there when you need it.