Surely, there’s a lot on your plate. You’ve got work, taking care of responsibilities for the house, kids and trying to keep yourself sane. For that reason, you end most nights with talking to your partner, friends or family with some light drinking. Or is it? In the age of wine-favoring parents and “sharing a cool one with the boys,” drinking has integrated in daily life. With that in mind, be aware if you are causally drinking or falling into casual alcoholism.

Casual Alcoholism: When it Becomes a Problem…

How Many Nights?                

Having a nice drink or two after a hard day isn’t a new practice. Neither is having one after every day. However, there is a difference. The difference with the two is one person has their drinking under control and the other may have casual alcoholism. If you, like many other people, have a few drinks every day, you may not recognize there’s a problem. The reason? You “deserve this after the work” you’ve done today. That may be true but even causal drinking plays a big part in things like the decline in mental skills. Try to be aware of how many nights you’re rewarding yourself with a drink.

How Much?

When you’re rewarding yourself with a drink, you may think that you’re having just one. But, you’re going to get another one because today was extra hard. Then, you’ll get another one because you cooked instead of ordering out. After that, you’ll get another one because you’re cleaning the dishes instead of leaving them and you deserve a reward! Right? Well, you may be deserving of doing all those tasks, but with the more drinks you have, it makes it less of a “casual drink.” Be aware of how much you drink during the nights you do cap off with your reward. This can better determine whether or not this is casual alcoholism.

Going Without It

Going without your reward of a drink can seem like a drag. If you’re not hurting anyone, you should be able to do it, right? The problem with that is, you actually are hurting someone: yourself. However, you can take steps to make this better. For starters, see if you can go a couple nights a week without your cap off. If not, there may be a bigger problem on your hands. Address this as soon as possible.

If you can do that, great! In that case, figure out other ways you feel like you’re being rewarded. In turn, this can relieve your stress while accessing if you have casual alcoholism. As long as what you’re doing is healthy and in moderation, you will feel better.

Having a nice cold one after a long day has become pretty standard. However, there’s a point when its casual and when its casual alcoholism. Be aware of how much you’re drinking and how dependent you are of it so you know where you stand.