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How To Tell if a Friend is Addicted to Alcohol and Needs a Drug Rehab Center in NJ

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD By October 29, 2018

No one likes to admit they have a problem. When you suspect a loved one might be struggling with an alcohol addiction, it can be hard to confront them, and even harder to get a straight answer out of them.There are many excellent recovery treatments and therapies available, but they all require the awareness of and willingness to deal with an alcohol problem. Here are some signs to watch for to help guide whether you need to confront them over their relationship with alcohol.

  1. Financial problems. Have you noticed your loved ones struggling to keep up with their bills and expenses? Alcohol is a costly habit, especially if the person is out drinking in bars. When people are succumbing to the depths of alcohol addiction, often the first place is shows is at the pocketbook. In particular, pay attention to their prioritization – are they liberal with their money at happy hour while complaining of being behind on their car payments? If a preferred type of alcohol supplanting groceries during trips to the supermarket? Alcohol addiction can powerfully skew a person’s priorities and the signs of those shifts is likely to show up in their bank balance.
  2. Mood swings. Have you noticed your loved one demonstrating much more moodiness? Volatile shifts in mood happen for everyone sometimes, but if it is becoming more frequent or more severe, especially when they’ve been drinking it may be a sign of alcohol addiction. Watch for bursts of anger, bouts of deep sadness, or even unusually effusive displays of affection – if they are persistent and frequent it might be time to talk to your loved one about their struggles.
  3. Smell. There’s no delicate way to say this – alcoholism has a distinct odor. There’s a sour smell tinged notes of their preferred spirit that lingers in their breath and even on their skin. The body is not built for processing that high of concentrations of toxins, and it’s going to use whatever means it has available to cleanse itself. If you do notice this, approach the situation with delicacy, it can be hard to hear that a person’s bad decisions are practically clouding the air. Try to maintain a compassionate and supportive tone rather than an accusatory one.


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If you notice these symptoms, it may be time to sit down with the person and discuss seeking help. Do your research in advance and come prepared with some ideas and knowledge, but mostly make sure it is clear that you are approaching the issue out of love and concern.

As hard as it is for you to bring up the subject, it will likely be harder for them to hear. But difficult as it is, recognizing that there is a problem is the first step towards recovery. Sober living in New Jersey is possible through the help Discovery Institute can offer. Call today for more information.

Article Reviewed by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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