It is not always necessary to stop drinking completely if you have problems with alcohol. There are individuals who once drank heavily who have learned to drink in moderation. This is more difficult than giving up completely. It is hard work and takes determination to learn controlled drinking if your drinking has been out of control. However, then there are times when small amounts of alcohol will be damaging or dangerous.
If you have issues with anxiety or depression or impulsivity, here are few food reasons why avoiding alcohol may be a good idea :
- Interferes with the processes of memory and with new learning.
- Interrupts normal sleep patterns, which affects energy, mood and anxiety level.
- Is a direct central nervous system depressant that interferes with mood stability and promotes depression.
- May provide short-term relief when you are anxious, but leads to rebound anxiety, which makes matters worse.
- Contributes to increased impulsivity.
- May lead to lowered inhibitions and negative choices that intensifies shame, anxiety, and depression.
- Increases the likelihood of using other substances.
- Interferes with the therapeutic effects of prescribed medications, including anti-anxiety and anti depressant medications.
- May be dangerous in combination with other medications.
- May trigger memories of past traumatic experiences that involved alcohol, leading to greater distress, increased shame, depression, anxiety or worse.
The extent to which you succeed in becoming a non-drinker will depend largely on your willingness to plan ahead and change your lifestyle. Leave things to chance and you are likely to fall into old habits. With genuine commitment, you can be a successful non-drinker.