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How to Stop Binge Drinking in 7 Steps
First of all, congratulations on trying to find out how to stop binge drinking.
In this article, we will talk about binge drinking, its signs and symptoms, and its effects. We will also discuss how to stop binge drinking.
By knowing how to stop binge drinking now, you can prevent alcohol use from further ruining your life.
What Is Binge Drinking?
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism describes binge drinking as a pattern of consuming alcohol that causes one’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to go to 0.08 grams or 0.08 percent.
For an adult, this type of alcohol misuse amounts to having four or more drinks for females and five or more drinks for males in approximately two hours.
Studies show that consuming fewer drinks in the same period leads to the same BAC in younger people. This corresponds to three drinks for girls and three to five drinks for boys. The exact amount of drinks depends on their size and age.
Signs and Symptoms of Binge Drinking
Knowing how to stop binge drinking includes being aware of the signs of binge drinking. Here are the signs and symptoms of binge drinking:
Many excessively drink at some point in their lives. However, frequent excessive drinking is the main sign of binge drinking.
Those who drink at least five times per month are considered heavy alcohol users. Therefore, they have a high risk of binge drinking or developing alcohol dependency.
People who have a drinking problem make excuses. They try to explain why they’re binge drinking and justify their behavior.
They also make excuses when they skip their responsibilities because of binge drinking. These responsibilities include paying the bills on time or picking up their kids at school.
Alcohol impairs lowers one’s inhibitions and judgment. Hence, binge drinking triggers risky behavior like gambling, reckless driving, consuming drugs, and fighting.
People who binge drink frequently have blackouts. This means they do not remember what happened during and after (or both) their binge drinking session.
Reasons Why People Binge Drink
Knowing how to stop binge drinking includes knowing why you binge drink. Here are the common reasons why people binge drink:
1. Believing That Drinking Benefits Them
Studies show that people’s attitude toward drinking has a huge effect on alcohol consumption.
Many people binge drink because they believe that fast intoxication produces many benefits such as lower inhibitions, better social interactions, and a sense of belongingness with friends who drink.
2. Failure to See That Binge Drinking Leads to Drunkenness
A significant number of binge drinkers do not see the connection between binge drinking and drunkenness. They usually think that they can handle the alcohol. As a result, they underestimate how drunk they really are.
3. Adopting the Behaviors of Drinkers
Studies reveal that drinking alcohol becomes more pleasurable when done with other drinkers.
Unfortunately, this so-called pleasure can result in a pattern of dangerous alcohol binging, especially if your friends also binge drink.
4. Easy Access to Alcohol
In many cases, easy access to alcohol contributes to the increasing rate of binge drinking. People who have easy access to alcohol have higher tendencies to binge drink than those who don’t.
5. Norms That Favor Binge Drinking
Alcohol use is considered a norm by most cultures. This means that people whose cultures encourage them to drink will more likely binge drink.
Dangerous Effects of Binge Drinking
Knowing how to stop binge drinking includes knowing why you binge drink. Here are the common, harmful effects of binge drinking:
● Accidents such as falls, vehicle crashes, poisoning, and burns
● Violence including assault, homicide, and suicide
● Sexually transmitted infections or diseases
● Unplanned pregnancy
● Poor pregnancy outcomes like stillbirth, miscarriage, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, and sudden infant death syndrome
● Chronic diseases such as liver problems, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular diseases
● Memory and learning problems
How to Stop Binge Drinking
Here’s how to stop binge drinking:
1. Change your environment.
First, you must prevent yourself from getting exposed to alcohol or people who binge drink. By doing so, you don’t get constantly triggered to binge drink.
2. Remind yourself of the pros and cons.
Stopping yourself from binge drinking can be hard. Keeping a list of the dangerous effects of binge drinking and consistently reminding yourself about them helps.
3. Reward your progress.
Setting realistic goals and rewarding your progress greatly improves your chances of stopping binge drinking. So, reward yourself when you get through a social event or period of time without binge drinking.
4. Enlist family and friends.
Having the right support system that includes your family and friends can encourage you to cut down on alcohol use and eventually quit binge drinking.
5. Find a support group.
If you have a binge drinking problem, know that you are not alone. Many people suffer from the same problem, and you can help each other. Groups such as SMART Recovery and Alcoholics Anonymous help members stay sober.
6. Set a limit when consuming alcohol.
If you cannot completely abstain from drinking alcohol in a short period of time, setting a limit can help. Taking things slowly is sometimes necessary for a full recovery.
7. Seek help from a professional.
Having a professional guide you through your recovery increases your chances of becoming sober. Remember, you should not be ashamed of seeking help.
While many binge drinkers do not believe or recognize that they have an issue, binge drinking can be extremely harmful. It can affect one’s health, relationships, and finances.
Fortunately, you can do several things to stop binge drinking. These include seeing a therapist, going to a recovery center, and using a sobriety app like I Am Sober.