A big part of the work of Alcohol Awareness Month is to point out the stigma that still surrounds alcoholism and substance abuse in general. For many, denial is a common trait among those struggling with alcoholism or alcohol abuse. They often underestimate the amount they drink, the duration of their drinking problem, the impact it has had on their life, or overestimate their ability to control their drinking or to quit. Denial is also common among friends and family members who are uncomfortable acknowledging the gravity and reality of the situation.
An estimated 14.4 million Americans ages 18 and older had an alcohol use disorder in 2018 according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Across the nation, 26.45% individuals 18 and older reported that they engaged in binge drinking in the past month (typically 4 drinks for women and 5 drinks for men in about 2 hours) while 6.6% engaged in heavy alcohol use (binge drinking on 5 or more days in the past month) in the past month.
Each year, an estimated 88,000 people die from alcohol-related causes annually and in 2014 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities accounted for 31% of overall driving fatalities (9,967 deaths). These deaths make alcohol the third leading preventable cause of death in the United States.
If you feel you or a loved one may be struggling with alcoholism, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Call 330-454-2000 to schedule an appointment with our Behavioral Health department.