advertisement
Question
Posted by: Bee-bee | 2010/12/20

Alcoholic / social drinker?

Good afternoon,

Trust that you are well.

What is the difference between being a social drinker and an alcoholic?
My b/friend drinks every weekend (Fri, Sat and Sun) and at least once a week. He does not necessarily get drunk every time he drinks, but on a Fri and Sat he normally does.

He is a very socialable person and this is why I''m not sure if it is a problem or not - forever meeting up with friends.

Even if he has a hang-over, he will get up for work, so it is not like his drinking habits effect his responsibilities.

Is this behaviour being classified as a social drinker / an alcoholic?

Thank you kindly.

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageAddictions expert

Hi there, thank you so much for your post. The American Psychiatric Association has developed strict criteria for the clinical diagnosis of abuse and dependence. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-IV (DSM-IV) defines abuse as: • A maladaptive pattern of substance use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by one (or more) of the following, occurring within a 12-month period: 1. recurrent substance use resulting in a failure to fulfil major role obligations at work, school, home (e.g., repeated absences or poor work performance related to substance use; substance-related absences, suspensions, or expulsions from school; neglect of children or household) 2. recurrent substance use in situations in which it is physically hazardous (e.g., driving an automobile or operating a machine when impaired by substance use) 3. recurrent substance-related legal problems (e.g., arrests for substance-related disorderly conduct) 4. continued substance use despite having persistent or recurrent social or interpersonal problems caused or exacerbated by the effects of the substance (e.g., arguments with spouse about consequences of intoxication, physical fights) Dependence is suspected when alcohol use is accompanied by signs of the following: • Abuse (1 or more of the above) • Compulsive drinking behaviour • Tolerance • Withdrawal DSM-IV defines dependence as: • A maladaptive pattern of substance use, leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by three (or more) of the following, occurring at any time in the same 12-month period: 1. tolerance, as defined by either of the following: ? a need for markedly increased amounts of the substance to achieve intoxication or desired effect ? markedly diminished effect with continued use of the same amount of substance 2. withdrawal, as manifested by either of the following: ? the characteristic withdrawal syndrome for the substance ? the same (or a closely related) substance is taken to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms 3. the substance is often taken in larger amounts or over a longer period than was intended 4. there is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control substance use 5. a great deal of time is spent in activities to obtain the substance, use the substance, or recover from its effects 6. important social, occupational or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of substance use 7. the substance use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the substance (e.g., continued drinking despite recognition that an ulcer was made worse by alcohol consumption) I hope this can be of some help to you, unfortunately without speaking to your boyfriend it is difficult to make an accurate diagnosis. However we would happily give him a full assessment if he would like to come into Harmony and meet with our Clinical Director. Kind regards and wishing you a peaceful 2011

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
Our users say:
Posted by: Addictions expert | 2010/12/21

Hi there, thank you so much for your post. The American Psychiatric Association has developed strict criteria for the clinical diagnosis of abuse and dependence. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-IV (DSM-IV) defines abuse as: • A maladaptive pattern of substance use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by one (or more) of the following, occurring within a 12-month period: 1. recurrent substance use resulting in a failure to fulfil major role obligations at work, school, home (e.g., repeated absences or poor work performance related to substance use; substance-related absences, suspensions, or expulsions from school; neglect of children or household) 2. recurrent substance use in situations in which it is physically hazardous (e.g., driving an automobile or operating a machine when impaired by substance use) 3. recurrent substance-related legal problems (e.g., arrests for substance-related disorderly conduct) 4. continued substance use despite having persistent or recurrent social or interpersonal problems caused or exacerbated by the effects of the substance (e.g., arguments with spouse about consequences of intoxication, physical fights) Dependence is suspected when alcohol use is accompanied by signs of the following: • Abuse (1 or more of the above) • Compulsive drinking behaviour • Tolerance • Withdrawal DSM-IV defines dependence as: • A maladaptive pattern of substance use, leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by three (or more) of the following, occurring at any time in the same 12-month period: 1. tolerance, as defined by either of the following: ? a need for markedly increased amounts of the substance to achieve intoxication or desired effect ? markedly diminished effect with continued use of the same amount of substance 2. withdrawal, as manifested by either of the following: ? the characteristic withdrawal syndrome for the substance ? the same (or a closely related) substance is taken to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms 3. the substance is often taken in larger amounts or over a longer period than was intended 4. there is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control substance use 5. a great deal of time is spent in activities to obtain the substance, use the substance, or recover from its effects 6. important social, occupational or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of substance use 7. the substance use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the substance (e.g., continued drinking despite recognition that an ulcer was made worse by alcohol consumption) I hope this can be of some help to you, unfortunately without speaking to your boyfriend it is difficult to make an accurate diagnosis. However we would happily give him a full assessment if he would like to come into Harmony and meet with our Clinical Director. Kind regards and wishing you a peaceful 2011

Reply to Addictions expert

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement