What is excessive drinking?  What other problems might be associated with it?

Risky Drinking is defined for men as more than 14 standard drinks per week or more than 4 standard drinks on any one day.  For women, risky drinking is defined as more than 7 standard drinks a week or more than 3 standard drinks on any one day.

A “standard drink” is defined as 5 ounces of wine, or 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces of liquor.

Common alcohol-related symptoms include: 

  • feeling out of control of your drinking  
  • being intoxicated in dangerous situations, such as while driving
  • spending a lot of time each week drinking
  • being intoxicated, or getting over effects of drinking
  • drinking instead of spending time on hobbies or with family/friends
  • family or friends worried about or disapprove of your drinking
  • drinking despite knowing that it is related to blackouts, depression, anxiety, and medical problems
  • drinking or effects of drinking are interfering with performing your best at work, school, or home
  • keep trying to cut down or stop drinking but not as successful as you would like
  • cravings or urges to drink
  • physical tolerance to alcohol  (“able to hold your liquor”)
  • withdrawal when you stop drinking

Communication between you and your loved ones may suffer because of drinking.

Isolating more and more. 

Feeling trapped and depressed in your day-to-day life.

Find yourself getting irritable and angry in ways you never did before. 

Your drinking may be a source of conflict between you and your spouse/partner.  Is he/she unhappy with your drinking?

You may feel that you are “different” or “damaged” after your service

You may sometimes drink to help cope with physical pain, or injuries

You may sometimes feel that no one understands the grief and memories you endure.

You may find that your drinking is feeling out of control.  It seems to control you sometimes.

You may be drinking for a reason, such as to avoid having nightmares or bad memories.

You may feel that no one at home can understand you now, and sometimes people drink to try to wash away those feelings.

You may feel that life looking forward feels bleak and empty. 


We will work with you and your family TO find a “new normal” that feels comfortable and optimistic.