The most effective treatment during the early stages of alcoholism includes therapy and support groups. In the last stage of alcoholism, the body will experience irreversible physical damage if alcohol use is not discontinued. Cirrhosis of the liver, which is scarring, will occur and if it progresses too far, can only be solved with a liver transplant that can’t be guaranteed available. If alcohol is discontinued, treatment with medications, nutrition therapy, and blood-work monitoring can help stabilize the condition. This occurs when the first drink is taken, which can occur well before the legal age of 21.
Continue reading to learn more about the four stages of alcoholism. Morton Jellinek was a scientist whose research helped form a better understanding of alcohol addiction today. In 1946 he published a paper on the progressive nature of alcoholism based on a small study of members of Alcoholics Anonymous. He proposed the idea that problem drinking follows a common trajectory through various stages of decline.
Should You Be Concerned About Your Drinking?
If an individual stays in a persistent stage of drinking, it can cause them to constantly crave and think about alcohol. This means spending a large majority of their time drinking and acquiring alcohol. Alcohol addiction is way more complex than media or society portrays it to be. A number of signs of a drinking problem are not that obvious and can be easy to misinterpret due to the prevalence of drinking.
Go to an Al-Anon or Alateen meeting or set up an appointment with a mental health professional. At the end of the day, the person with addiction has to be willing to accept help. Early-stage alcoholism, or the prodromal phase, is when people begin binge drinking regularly and may even black out occasionally.
Problematic Alcohol Abuse
Jellinek looked at the way alcoholics started in the pre-alcoholic stage, drinking in a casual, social manner. As they continue drinking, though, they move from a point where their reasons for drinking are no longer social but psychological. Whether they realize it or not, they’re beginning to lose control of their drinking. If they do https://ecosoberhouse.com/ not stop drinking, they continue progressing to the point of alcohol dependence and then finally to the point of chronic alcohol use. The primary symptoms of stage four include all-consuming alcohol use, health problems, and dangerous withdrawal symptoms. End-stage alcoholism, also known as late-stage alcoholism, is the most severe.
- This means that when they stop drinking or miss a dosage of alcohol, they will experience symptoms of withdrawal.
- Finally, support groups, such as AA, can support the individual and give them a sense of accountability.
- Early-Stage Alcoholism is also known as the transitional stage.
- Alcohol addiction in this stage may show in someone losing their job due to work absence, or relationship fights involving drinking may occur.
- We understand that alcohol use can be difficult to address and that the process of recovery is individual.
They drink around the clock in order to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal may create hallucinations and even deadly consequences like stroke and coma at this phase. The pattern of drinking becomes more severe in the middle alcoholic stage.
Signs and Symptoms of Early-Stage Alcoholism
Moreover, if you abstain from drinking alcohol during this stage, you can put your life in danger. In the early stage of alcoholism, you’ve started to develop an alcohol dependence. During this stage, you may engage in problem drinking because a few drinks aren’t enough to produce the pleasurable feelings stages of alcoholism you usually get when you drink. In other words, you’ve started to develop a drinking problem that can put your physical and/or mental health at risk. If you think a family member or loved one might be showing signs, signals or symptoms of alcoholism, know that it won’t “go away” on its own.