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Abuse of Alcohol

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What is alcohol abuse?

Alcohol abuse means you drink more than the recommended daily or weekly limits. You may be drinking alcohol regularly or drinking large amounts in a short period of time (binge drinking). You continue to drink even though it causes legal, work, or relationship problems.

What do I need to know about recommended alcohol limits?

One drink is defined as 12 ounces (oz) of beer, 5 oz of wine, or 1.5 oz of liquor such as whiskey.

What are the signs and symptoms of alcohol abuse?

What health problems can alcohol abuse cause?

How is alcohol abuse treated?

Treatment can help you understand the reasons you abuse alcohol. Counselors and therapists provide you with support and help you find ways to cope instead of drinking. You may need inpatient treatment to provide a controlled environment. You may need outpatient treatment after your inpatient treatment is complete.

What can I do to manage my alcohol use?

Where can I find support and more information?

Call your local emergency number (911 in the US), or have someone call if:

When should I seek care immediately?

When should I call my doctor?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.