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Alcohol Use Disorder


Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is problem drinking. AUD includes alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence. Alcohol can damage your brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, and liver. Your risk of stroke is greater if you have 5 or more drinks each day. If you are pregnant, you and your baby are at risk for serious health problems. No amount of alcohol is safe during pregnancy.


Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) if:

  • You have seizures.

Call your doctor if:

  • Your heart is beating faster than usual.
  • You have hallucinations.
  • You cannot remember what happens while you are drinking.
  • You are anxious and have nausea.
  • Your hands are shaky and you are sweating heavily.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

Do not try to stop drinking on your own. Your healthcare provider may need to help you withdraw from alcohol safely. He or she may need to admit you to the hospital. You may also need any of the following:

  • Medicines to decrease your craving for alcohol
  • Support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Therapy from a psychiatrist or psychologist
  • Admission to an inpatient facility for treatment for severe AUD

For support and more information:

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
    PO Box 2345
    Rockville , MD 20847-2345
    Web Address:
  • Alcoholics Anonymous
    Web Address:

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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.

Further information

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