Alcohol: How much is too much?
Alcohol can cause a wide range of physical and psychological damage when consumed in excess. Often, individuals are completely unaware of the quantities that they consume, or the damage they are doing to their bodies.
How much is too much?
Many people in the UK drink alcohol and the majority do so without any problems. Drinking can be enjoyable, sociable, and can offer a way for people to unwind and relax. However, frequent and excessive drinking can cause a great deal of harm and for some, drinking habits can spiral out of control and develop into dependency.
To help you assess your drinking, we invite you to have a look at the following data.
What's a unit?
Drinking units were introduced as a means of measuring the amount of alcohol in a drink.
- Pint of 4% lager or bitter = 2.3 units
- 175ml glass of 13% wine (small glass) = 2.3 units
- 75ml bottle of 12% wine = 9 units
- 25ml glass of 40% single spirit and mixer = 1 unit
How would you describe your drinking?
|Questions||Scoring system||Your score|
|How often do you have a drink containing alcohol?||Never||Monthly
|2 - 4 times per month||2 - 3 times per week||4+ times per week|
|How many units of alcohol do you drink on a typical day when you are drinking?||1 -2||3 - 4||5 - 6||7 - 9||10+|
|How often during the last year have you found that you were not able to stop drinking once you had started?||Never||Less than monthly||Monthly||Weekly||Daily or almost daily|
|How often during the last year have you failed to do what was normally expected of you because of your drinking?||Never||Less than monthly||Monthly||Weekly||Daily or almost daily|
|Has a relative, friend, doctor or other health worker been concerned about your drinking or suggested that you cut down?||No||Yes, but not in the last year||Yes, during the last year|
A total of five or above indicates increasing or higher risk drinking and as such, it is worth you getting this checked out with your GP and/or contacting us at Life Works.
Alcohol can cause a wide range of physical problems such as weight fluctuations, liver disease, stroke, cancer, memory loss, high blood pressure, and sexual dysfunction.
Besides the physical harm, frequent excessive alcohol consumption can also be harmful on a psychological level, resulting in anxiety, stress and depression. Many also report sleep disturbances and headaches.
Physical and emotional harm aside, frequent excessive drinking can also cause personal relationships to suffer, which can exacerbate feelings of stress and depression. This vicious cycle often gains in intensity, leaving the sufferer feeling helpless and unable to stop.
Alcohol addiction is a serious illness that, if left untreated, can result in grave consequences. Often, underlying emotional issues drive the addiction as alcohol serves to numb the pain of these issues. Specialist alcohol dependence treatment in a residential facility, addressing not only the addictive behaviour but also the underlying emotional issues, can lead to recovery. The earlier you act, the greater the likelihood of successful treatment and improved quality of life. You may feel there is little or no point in getting help – but know that this is the illness of addiction talking. By not getting help, you are exposing yourself to serious risks, to your health, your safety – and your future.
So call us today; you have nothing to lose but everything to gain.