Social drinking can be a lot of fun. You drink in a responsible manner when you’re in the company of friends or family. Many people remain social drinkers without it ever getting out of control. The dangers of social drinking, however, comes when it passes into problem drinking.
Knowing the dangers will help you to identify when you may have a problem and what needs to be done to get everything under control. In the event that you’re the one who can control yourself but you see others cross the line from “social” to “problematic,” you’ll know why it’s time to step up and say something.
Experience Alcohol-Related Consequences
There are some consequences that can occur as a result of drinking, even in a social setting. Around the globe, 6 percent of deaths are due to the use and misuse of alcohol. Many people have no idea how alcohol is going to affect them until they’re dealing with the consequences. Additionally, different types of alcohol can affect the body differently.
Consequences can include:
- Health issues (liver problems, brain damage, toxicity)
- Driving under the influence
- Criminal behavior
- Excessive spending
Social drinking is often about keeping up appearances. It may be easier to drink more than you would normally because of the peer pressure found within the situation. You have another drink or you try a drink outside of what you normally have because others are doing it. That’s when the consequences kick in – and you have to be prepared for whatever those may be.
Determining How Much is Too Much
How many drinks will cause you to be drunk or lose your inhibitions? The reality is that it’s impossible to know. Your weight and your overall tolerance will be one of the factors. The drinks you’re having and whether you’re consuming food at the same time will be another factor.
Since everyone can be affected by social drinking differently, it’s important to know what your body can handle. Familiarizing yourself with what the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits are in your area will help you to know when you can experience a DUI. It can, at the very least, ensure you don’t get behind the wheel of a car.
It’s not just about drunk driving, though. Too much alcohol can cause you to hurt yourself, say things you don’t mean, and even blackout.
Drinking should be fun but without losing control. If you’re drinking too much during your social outings, it may be a bigger problem than you realize.
When Social Drinking Becomes Too Frequent
It’s fun to go out and drink socially with friends one or two nights a week. It might be a happy hour after work or it may be a Sunday Funday brunch. Whatever the situation, you have to explore what happens when you find that you’re simply looking for an excuse to drink in social situations.
What used to be just a periodic get-together has now turned into something that is happening every night – and you might not even need friends to pour a drink.
If you find that your social drinking isn’t just social anymore, it may be time to explore an alcohol rehab program. It would allow you to get your drinking under control.
Social drinking is fine – as long as it’s done responsibly. If it becomes problematic, such as interfering with relationships or responsibilities, it may be time to examine what is really going on. Addiction can happen before you know it – and getting help may be what’s needed to get help.
Once you know the dangers of social drinking, it’s easier to keep yourself as well as those around you in check.