Alcohol Awareness Month

Alcohol Awareness Week

The world is dealing with a lot right now. Coronavirus has taken over lives - more accurately, it's upended them. And while we try to make sense of what our new "normal" will be, people are finding ways to cope with the changes, too.

Which brings us to Alcohol Awareness Month. We haven't had a lot of time to devote to this year's observance, but that doesn't mean it's any less important - especially in a time like this. Experts in the field of substance abuse are sharing stories of people turning more to alcohol to cope. Media have reported on a serious spike in alcohol sales, too. 

That's why it's important to become aware of signs of alcoholism, as well as where to turn for treatment.

What does alcoholism do to the body? For one thing, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says alcohol can affect the normal function of cells that can lead to a cancerous tumor. Whats more, the CDC says the risk of cancer can increase with the number of drinks consumed. More on this at the CDC website.

Alcoholism doesn't always show itself right away. Some people get very adept at hiding it. That's why it's important to look at the subtle changes in people yoy know. Early signs include:

  • frequent intoxication
  • an established pattern of heavy drinking
  • drinking in dangerous circumstances, like driving
  • insomnia or sleeping too much, or
  • blackouts

Experts say you can talk with that loved one to help them see the problem. Study up on how to do that first, and time your talk wtih them. And when that loved one is ready, there are local agencies ready to help.