National Institutes of Health

Signs of Alcohol Abuse and Addiction

People drunk on alcohol often:

  • Laugh and talk loudly
  • Feel dizzy
  • Have blurry vision
  • Have trouble staying on their feet and sway when they walk
  • Slur words when they talk
  • Feel sleepy and relaxed
  • Pass out
  • Throw up
  • Fight and even get violent

Getting drunk can lead you to do or say things that you regret later on. It also makes you more likely to have an accident and get hurt.

After drinking a lot, people get a headache and feel sick. This is called a hangover.

People who are addicted to alcohol start having to drink more and more to get drunk. They might have a drink in the morning to calm down or stop a hangover. They might drink alone, and they might keep it a secret.

They might forget things that happened when they were drunk. This is called a blackout.

People who are trying to quit drinking might:

  • Feel nervous and sad
  • Shake
  • Sweat
  • Have trouble sleeping

They will feel a very strong need to drink alcohol.

Young woman crying into hand

People who drink too much alcohol might forget things that happened when they were drunk. This is called a blackout. (Photo information)