The Relationship Between Alcohol and Anxiety
Addiction is a symptom of anxiety. Anxiety is a symptom of addiction. Alcohol and anxiety go hand in hand, are inseparable and work together to inflame the worst aspects of the human condition.
That is not to say that all those who feel anxious are, or will become, addicts. Far from it, many people suffer from bouts of anxiety their whole lives and do not feel the need to over-indulge. The issue, as Rehab Guide see it, is that many do and we believe that coping with anxiety is fundamental in addiction treatment.
What is essential to understand, whatever the stage or intensity of any anxiety that you may be experiencing is, is that no matter how long you may have been suffering anxiety, by just learning to recognise it you are half way to beating it.
Anxiety is loosely defined as ‘a state of uneasiness and apprehension’. Therefore feeling anxious about something may be entirely natural. Feeling slightly uneasy about something is an evolutionary by-product to defend us from things that are new and may hurt us. It is safe to say that everybody experiences periods of anxiety as part of the natural course of daily life. When the course of daily life becomes disrupted by the periods of anxiety, however, or when periods of anxiety become the natural course of daily life then the issue must be addressed.
Self-Medicating Anxiety with Alcohol
It is common practice for someone to have a drink or two after a hard day to alleviate stress. However, when that person has an anxiety disorder, it is easy for that drink to turn into three or five as they try to silence their mind. This self-medication of the issue makes them more likely to develop a dependence and eventually addiction.
The first set back to getting treatment for anxiety is the vast and all-encompassing array of symptoms. If you are looking for an anxiety disorder, you can find one in almost any aspect of your life, good or bad. Keeping a tidy house, having an upset stomach or feeling uncomfortable in crowds, all of which are perfectly sane and usual, can be construed as symptoms of impending anxious stress. It is by recognising various signs and their relationship to your own emotions and triggers that what we term ‘Alcoholic Anxiety’ can be combated.
If you’re suffering from addiction to alcohol and anxiety, it can be hard to find the right help. A lot of people view alcoholism as the more immediate danger, but without treating the underlying anxiety, you’re more likely to relapse. Finding a place that understands how to treat your anxiety disorder can be the difference between failure and long-term recovery. If you don’t know where to turn to and need help figuring out your next steps, try reaching our dedicated treatment specialists. They can point you in the right direction and help you find the proper treatment for you.
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