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Signs of Alcoholism in Men

Batul Nafisa Baxamusa Jan 1, 2019
Signs of alcoholism in men helps one find out if they are dependent or under alcohol abuse. Provided here are some of the physical signs of this condition, that will help one take the corrective action before it is too late.
Alcoholism, alcohol abuse, or alcohol addiction, these are three more or less synonymous terms used to describe a person who is alcohol dependent. Such a person will continue to consume alcohol, even if it affects his health, family life, and social standing.
An alcoholic will drink away all his finances, and still would not stop consuming alcohol. If one is worried about someone who is on the verge of becoming alcoholic, then it is important to watch out for the early signs of alcoholism.

Early Signs

It has been found that men are five times more prone to become an alcoholic than women. Alcoholism is a medical condition that may be inherited according to research studies. It has been found that people who have had relatives like parents or siblings dependent on alcohol, may be prone to becoming alcoholics themselves.
Others who may have psychiatric condition, have personality complex, anxiety, social isolation, or face poverty are more likely to become alcohol dependent.
There are different stages of alcoholism. Alcohol tends to help make people feel happy about themselves. It kind of affects the 'reward mechanism' in the brain. They continue consuming it as it helps them forget their issues.
However, they do not realize that they are wasting away their life as well as health on alcohol. They continue drinking so much that they develop a tolerance level to it. Thus, giving rise to warning signs of alcoholism. Some of the early symptoms of alcoholism in men is as follows:
  • The person begins to develop tolerance to alcohol. He may drink one or two drinks initially, however, gradually starts increasing the consumption to more number of drinks or bottles.
  • The person will boast a lot around his friends and family. He will have a huge ego and behave as a 'big shot'.
  • The person is always on a watch for a new opportunity to drink. If the person is happy he will drink, if he is sad he will want to drink, and even if there is nothing significant happening in his life, he will still want to drink more.
  • The person will gulp down an entire bottle of alcohol without showing any significant physical or psychological impairment.
  • The person is drunk for several days at a stretch.
  • The person continues to drink even when other drinkers around him have stopped drinking.
  • The person has an increased tolerance for liquor. However, he will deny having such problems.
  • The person tends to drink before visiting an event, even if he knows free drinks would be available.
  • Shows significant changes in mood, as well as behavior.

Physical Signs

If one is not around the person to observe his drinking style, it will be a wise idea to read the physical signs of alcoholism. These signs and symptoms can differ in their frequency as well as quantity. This depends on the amount of alcohol the person consumes daily. Here are the physical signs:
  • The person will constantly have a slurred speech.
  • He has an unstable gait.
  • His physical coordination is very poor.
  • The person experiences frequent black outs after each drinking spree.
  • The person has a red face, especially a red nose is a sign of a drinker.
  • He feels numbness in his hands or feet.
  • The person begins to keep alcohol in his office drawer or at home.
  • He tends to lose all social contacts and becomes kind of a loner.
  • The person becomes irritated if he is not able to drink alcohol at his stipulated drinking time or does not get it.
  • The person begins to feel nauseated, vomits, and even shakes if he does not get to drink alcohol.
  • The person tends to neglect his physical hygiene. He is more likely to turn up in office with a bad breath, body odor, unclean clothes, dressed in a haphazard manner, etc.
  • The person becomes extremely short-tempered and aggressive. He can be easily provoked without any apparent reason, if he does not have his drinks.
  • Lack of appetite is a major physical sign of this condition. The person starts eating less and begins to lose weight and look abnormally pale. In some cases, he begins to gain weight abnormally and develops bags under his eyes.
  • Frequent loss of memory is a sign of an alcoholic. Chronic and frequent hangovers also indicate signs of this medical condition.

Warning Signs

If one is confused and unsure if a person experiencing this problem, then the following warning signs might prove useful.
  • The person prefers to drink alone, away from a social setting or a group of friends.
  • When asked, the person will lie regarding the amount of alcohol he has consumed.
  • The level of tolerance for the amount of alcohol increases manifold.
  • The person will be in huge debts as he will borrow money to satisfy his dependency on alcohol. He may experience financial loses as he would no longer concentrate on his flow of money.
  • The person continues to drink more alcohol than his friends can consume.
  • The person experiences blackouts due to his inability to stop consuming alcohol.
  • The person will drink alcohol after a fight with his wife/girlfriend, a tiff with friend, or an argument with boss. It becomes his way of solving his life problems.
  • The cure for hangover is drinking more alcohol the first thing in the morning.
  • The person is neck-deep in financial, as well as legal problems due to this condition. The person may be served DUI's, court cases filed against him for car accidents, frequent fist fights, or hospital bills related to his own treatment due to accidents he may get into.
  • The person's family life is dwindling due to this habit of drinking. He may have a strained relationship with his wife, kids, and even parents as it is not easy living with an alcoholic. He may become more verbally and physically abusive towards his family, as well as friends.
Most men think drinking alcohol is a sign of masculinity. However, this is not the case as consuming alcohol more than the prescribed limit of 2 drinks per day, would lead to many health complications (1 drink per day, in case of women).
There are many psychological, mental, physical and relationship problems one may have to face due to drinking problems. If one is worried whether he/she is an alcoholic, the first thing to do is to accept the fact, that he/she is alcohol dependent. Then, he/she should speak to the doctor about his/her case as there are different treatments for alcoholism.
One can also try to get registered with an alcoholics anonymous group or a rehab center. It is important that one saves themselves and their family from the consequences of chronic alcoholism. This is because the affected person may lose more than he/she has ever bargained for in the long run.
Disclaimer: This is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.