They love to drink? –  

August 28, 2020 – Witnessing a family member struggling with excessive drinking can be fear-inducing, heart-wrenching, and confusing – especially for those who are unsure if their relative’s alcohol misuse is a sign of a more sinister health issue: alcohol use disorder(AUD).  

When does social drinking become alcohol use disorder?

To recognize the first stages of alcohol use disorder in a loved one, families should note the indicators of alcohol abuse, a pattern of risky or excessive drinking that can compromise a person’s health and well-being. The line between social drinking and alcohol abuse is not always clear, leaving some families to wonder how they can best support their relative.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines define excessive alcohol consumption as 15 or more drinks in one week for men and 8 or more drinks in one week for women. Another factor to consider is how many drinks a person is consuming in one sitting. For male drinkers, having five drinks over the course of two hours can be risky. For women, this number is four drinks over the same period. 

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