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Binge drinking: Risks, side effects, treatment options and more

Binge drinking: Risks, side effects, treatment options and more

Drinking alcohol is a common social practice in our society. People often drink to celebrate  success, happiness and some even resort to drinking to deal with problems in their life. However, when this behaviour blurs the line between casual drinking to behaviour that disrupts life, it is said to be alcoholism. Alcoholism can manifest in several ways and binge drinking is one of them. In this guide, we look at binge drinking and why it is so problematic for your health. 

What is Binge Drinking?

Binge drinking is the practice of consuming large amount of alcohol in a short duration of time or in simple terms ‘drinking to get drunk’. Binge drinking or abusing alcohol over long periods of time leads to severe health complications. Binge drinking can lead to a serious lack of judgement and lead to crime, violence, accidents, etc.

Over recent years, there has been a heavy increase in binge drinking amongst women (from 8% to 15%), while in men over the same period, it has hiked up by just 1%. The biggest increase was seen in young adult women aged between 16 and 24 (rising from 7.3 units per week to 10.8 units) and those over 65 years.!

The most disturbing trend in binge drinking is that of 11-15-year-olds – although fewer are drinking. Some consume even more than 16-24-year-old counterparts. Now that we know what binge drinking is, you would want to know why people start with binge drinking in the first place.

Why do people binge drink?

According to research studies, there is a swift increase in the number of binge drinkers every year. But what makes an individual binge drink? Binge drinking is often resorted to by the youth and they see it as a way to temporarily escape their problems and lower inhibitions. However, the problem is that the effects of binge drinking can often be permanent and lead to lifelong health complications. 

Binge Drinking signs and symptoms

Here is the list of a few prominent signs of binge drinking disorder: 

  •     Become detached from society, family and friends
  •     Lack of control over your drinking
  •     Being aggressive or abusive under the influence
  •     Drinking alone
  •     Missing work due to hangovers
  •     Extreme mood swings
  • You start neglecting your appearance and your health, including diet
  •     Blackouts
  •     Impaired memory
  •     Irritability and a darker outlook on life
  •     Sleeping disorders
  •     Anxiety and Depression
  •     Simple situations are harder to evaluate – confusion
  •     Use of drugs to “feel better”

Effects/Risks of Binge Drinking behaviour

It is especially unfortunate when you engage in this pattern of drinking because you have a lot to lose. Researchers have warned that people who are involved in heavy drinking risk permanent and severe damage to brain functions. Excessive alcohol has the ability to interfere with a critical phase of the development of young brains. A widely common deleterious effect, i.e, memory loss can extend into adulthood due to excessive consumption of alcohol. Binge drinkers of all ages suffer the highest risk of alcohol-related injuries.  

The other negative health effects associated with binge drinking disorder are: 

  •     Alcohol poisoning
  •     Children born with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
  •     High blood pressure
  •     Neurological damage
  •     Chronic difficulties. 

Usually, violence is linked to binge drinking as there is a complete impairment of judgement. Too much alcohol consumption can also lead to abuse and dependence. Many studies have highlighted that the risks of developing these issues are greater for youth and young adults.  

The majority of young adults who binge drink in their 20s are most likely to binge drink in their 40s too. If you would take stock of your drinking patterns and make the decision to drink wisely and moderately, you would save yourself from a lot of grief in your later years. 

Quitting Binge Drinking: What are your options?  

Binge drinking is the most common pattern of excessive alcohol usage, which is a social problem that often impacts the youth disproportionately. In order to put an end to this problem, setting up your mind and taking expert medical advice on how to stop binge drinking is imperative. , As part of the treatment program, the doctor will guide you to explore the following aspects of your life. 

Understand how drinking affects your life

Binge drinking affects your life in a number of ways. It can cause numerous health problems, low performance at work or academics and feeble personal relationships. If you understand how binge drinking affects your life, you’re self-motivated and dedicated to overcoming the problem. 

Set clear-cut goals for yourselves

Quitting binge drinking can’t happen overnight as it takes lots of effort, time, dedication and assistance. If you decide to do so, you should’ve your goals ready. Set yourself days when you drink and don’t drink. Try to set a limit on the number of drinks you will have. 

Stay busy

A big reason behind constantly drinking is boredom and by changing your priorities and pastimes, you can see a huge difference in your drinking habits. By making fitness as a priority or cultivating new habits, you’ll slowly stop engaging in self sabotaging behaviours. 

Keep your loved ones in the loop 

Support and motivation from family members or friends are imperative in this case. You’re expected to keep your loved ones informed about your stress and issues. If you face peer pressure, you can stay away from your peers while you work on your binge drinking issue.

 Find a drink replacement

As per a person’s tastes, a binge drinking habit can be replaced with other healthier drinks like soda, tea, coffee, smoothies, etc. This method tends to work perfectly for a lot of people. 

Binge Drinking treatment: Getting professional help

It is vital to know that prevention plays an essential role in reducing the number of binge drinkers. Knowing the harmful effects of drinking and seeking instant help for the same would be the first step to recovery.

 If you start to notice a few of these signs in yourself or someone you care about, it is time to take charge of the situation. This is when it becomes essential to look at the suitable options available to the alcoholic consumer who wants to change their pattern. Professional help is definitely needed for binge drinking disorder. Most people may even try to stop and perhaps do for a short while, only to fall back into the same patterns or binge drinking and alcohol abuse. 

Today, there are binge drinking treatment options available that offer people the necessary tools that they may have lacked earlier which pushed them to excessive drinking habits. Tools for learning, tools for having better relationships and getting along with others, confronting life’s issues, communicating and deciding one’s own future. Tools to prevent further relapses. Moreover, these tools may include therapies, counselling, medication and relaxation techniques. 

Choose Cadabams

Cadabams is one of the best alcohol rehab centres that offer evidence-based solutions and treatments. One of the leading Alcohol and Drug rehabilitation centres in Bangalore, Cadabams Anunitha is committed to producing successful recovery outcomes by personalizing drug and alcohol rehabilitation process for addicts with different struggles and unique challenges. 

For a complete focus on recovery without stress or distractions, Anunitha’s inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation is the best choice. Anunitha’s inpatient alcohol rehab centre and drug rehab centre has personalized support from medical staff and round-the-clock care. A holistic treatment plan is customised based on the patient’s needs. 

The dedicated team at Anunitha uses clinically-proven treatment approaches to treat substance and drug abuse. From group therapies, family therapy, alcohol, and drug detoxes, 12 step programs and more, there are varied treatment approaches that are used to ensure long term recovery for the patients.  A supervised medical program helps in preventing complications and hallucinations, the most common drug withdrawal symptoms. There’s also a strong aftercare session with mentors and support groups to prevent relapses. A support group for caregivers and family members is also present to ensure steady recovery and constant support.  

You can call us on our de-addition helpline +91 96111 94949 for further details on getting alcohol treatment in India or any alcoholism-related emergencies.

DisclaimerWe strive to treat our patients with dignity and the utmost sensitivity. We understand that addiction is a disease and that it is not a sign of weakness. The term alcoholic, alcoholism or addicts is used not in a derogatory fashion but to remain relevant to user search trends and common usage.– It is important to note that addiction should be referred to as ‘substance use disorder’ to better address the effects of this psychological condition. Words like addict, junkie, etch should be avoided as they place the blame on the individual.

Individuals/person/people suffering from substance use disorder or substance dependence syndrome should be used. In case you or a loved are struggling with alcohol abuse and share a unique viewpoint on how we can improve this content for our readers, please reach out to us on info@cadabams.org

Our team at Cadabams strives to treat our patients with dignity and the utmost sensitivity for a broad spectrum of alcoholism-related issues. We understand that alcohol addiction is a disease, and it is not a sign of weakness. In case you, or a loved one, are struggling with alcoholism and share a real-time perspective on how we can improve this content for our readers, do reach out to us at info@cadabams.org