You don’t have to be an alcoholic for drinking to affect your health. Wine, beer or the occasional slot of somethong stronger. Many of us enjoy a couple of drinks when we hang out with friends and family at parties or on a night out at the local wàtering hole, but do you wonder if you drink too much?
According to the 2013 National Survey on Drug use and Health more than 86 percent of people ages 18 or older have reported drinking alcohol at some point in their life and 26.9 percent have admitted to being drinking 4 or 5 drinks in a just a couple of hours. In the previous month.
It may suprise you to know what is really considered excessive alcohol use. For women, it means having 8 or more drinks in a week, and for men consuming 14 or more drinks during that same time period. If you enjoy a drink with dinner everynight and then knock back a few at least on weeknd night, you can see now quickly all thise drinks add up.
While engaging in excessove alcoholuse doesn’t necessarily mean you are an alcoholic, it can still be a health hazard. The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention report that “Excessive alcohol use led to approxinately 88000 deaths and 2.5 Million Years of Potential Life Lost (YPLL) each year in the United States from 2006-2010 shoeteling the lives of those whp died by an Average of 30 years.
Besides the increased risk of dangerous behaviour like driving while drinking, getting into fights and unplanned pregnancies, excessive alcohol use is linked to higher risk for infection.
Here are three signs you are drinking too much (sources include National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Centers for Diseasr Control and Prevention and Mayo Clinic).
1. You need a drink everyday to unwind from the stress of the day. You are an emotional drinker, treating yourself to one or two to both celebrate happy times and to forget your troubles.
2. When you’re out with friends, you often drink more than that you had planned.
3. You, struggle woth a lot of hangover in the morning and experience blackouts_gaps in your memory_from the night before, affecting your ability to keep up with work and family responsibilities.
If you are worried about your alcohol use, talk to your primary physician or call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, Admonistration’s National Helpline.