How to Spot the Physical Signs of Alcoholism (And Ways You Can Help)

Use this guide to understand the physical signs of alcoholism and the strategies you can take to help a person find treatment and support.

Approximately 3 million deaths are linked to the harmful use of alcohol worldwide per year. People who drink in this way are abusing alcohol, and it can impair their ability to live life as usual.

Many physical signs show a person is abusing alcohol. If you suspect someone you know is drinking excessively and signs are pointing to alcoholism, there are things you can do to help.

Read on to learn how to spot the physical signs of alcoholism and ways you can help.

Physical Signs of Alcoholism

Heavy and regular use of alcohol is defined as four or more standard alcoholic drinks per day for men or three or more for women. The moderate use of alcohol is 1 or 2 standard drinks for men and 1 or 1.5 standard drinks for women. If you are concerned about someone’s drinking habits, look for these physical signs of alcoholism.

Changes in the Skin’s Appearance

Alcoholism can be marked by physical signs, particularly changes in the skin’s appearance. Such indicators can include redness and swelling on the face, neck, and nose due to dilated blood vessels. Nodules and growths on the face and nose can also form due to excess alcohol consumption.

Additionally, individuals suffering from alcoholism may start to look older because the condition affects the ability of the skin to heal and slows down the process of cell production. This can lead to wrinkles, age spots, and thinner skin.

Jaundice In The Eyes

Jaundice, which makes the skin and eyes appear yellow, results from liver damage caused by the overconsumption of alcohol. Jaundice can also indicate excessive drinking if accompanied by other symptoms such as vomiting or nausea.

Constant Shaking or Trembling

The trembling or shaking can be mild or severe, typically accompanied by feelings and signs of anxiety, stress, and exhaustion. Alcoholism can also cause general weakness and significantly impact motor skills as the body won’t process the toxins and nutrients created by alcohol properly.

Fatigue and Rapid Weight Loss

Fatigue is a prevalent symptom of alcoholism due to the body’s attempt to process alcohol, which creates an energy drain continually. Rapid weight loss is also common amongst alcoholics due to alcohol’s appetite suppression and the body’s inability to properly extract nutrients from food.

Ways You Can Help an Alcoholic

There are many ways you can help an alcoholic, though it is important to remember that they must want help for anything to be successful. Be supportive, patient, and understanding. Offer to listen and provide an ear to talk to without judgment.

Encouraging them to enter a rehabilitation program is vital in helping them get to a healthier lifestyle. You can even offer to help them with research or accompany them to their appointments. Check out this resource to start the healing process.

Attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings with them is also a positive form of support. Try to influence them positively, such as by decreasing their alcohol intake. Ultimately, be there for them and ensure they know they are not alone in their journey and have your support.

Journey to Sober Life

Do not ignore these physical signs of alcoholism. It is important for family and friends to seek help for the individual suffering from alcohol addiction. Take the initiative to learn more about alcoholism and the available resources to seek treatment.

Reach out to a professional and take the initiative to help yourself or a loved one.

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