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How to Tell If Your Friend Is Struggling with Alcohol Abuse

by For Content

Substance abuse in all its forms is not only hard for the person struggling with it, but it is also challenging for the friends, family, and loved ones who don't know what to do. Often times they are completely oblivious to the substance abuse, at least at the beginning when the signs are harder to identify. This is unfortunately quite often the case with alcohol abuse, especially since drinking is so ingrained in modern culture. Here are a few signs that your friend is not just a social drinker but may need some help with substance abuse before they fall much further.

Drinking Alone 

Drinking for most people is a social affair and one that they do to enjoy themselves more around their friends. While there is nothing wrong with a cold beer after a long day of work or a nice glass of red wine with a special meal you cooked yourself, if you notice that your friend or loved one is routinely drinking quite a lot of liquor on their own then you may want to watch for other signs that indicate substance abuse. Drinking alone is a slippery slope, especially if it turns from one or two drinks into a bottle of liquor every couple of nights.

Deteriorating Health

Alcohol is quite full of calories and can have a significantly negative impact on your health in several ways. Not only does it give you the famous beer belly, but it can make the skin color on your face turn quite red and blotchy. Alcohol dehydrates the skin, and if you drink a lot and for a long period of time, it will begin to take a toll that is very hard to cover up. If you notice that your friend's appearance is more disheveled than usual yet they don't appear to be eating differently than normal, alcohol could be the culprit.

Money Problems

Alcohol might not be as expensive as some other illicit drugs, but it still does cost quite a bit of money especially when you are drinking every night. Money issues are a potential sign of substance abuse for many drugs, but with alcohol, it is often put down to a minor loss in judgment and laughed off by friends. Don't encourage the addiction by trying to help them out through a loan or helping them buy more alcohol—talk to the people around them in their life and see whether or not they feel the same way. If a lot of people do, then it may be time to talk to them about it in an open and safe setting so that they can get help.