When people stop drinking but are still dealing with irritability, anger, remorse, or dysphoria, they may earn themselves the label of being a “dry drunk.” Dry drunk symptoms range from mild to severe, but the solution is nearly always the same: to start engaging in the healing work of recovery. The best alcohol addiction treatment centers will always focus on the whole person to help prevent the onset of dry drunk behavior.
If you think that’s what you or your loved one needs, reach out to The Bluffs by calling 850.374.5331.
What Is a Dry Drunk?
A dry drunk describes a person with alcohol use disorder who has stopped drinking but has failed to change in any other meaningful way. They may be sober, but they haven’t necessarily achieved recovery. They are still using unhealthy coping mechanisms, lashing out in anger, or being resentful of the world for one reason or another.
So much of addiction recovery hinges upon the self-work practices that are present at addiction treatment facilities and self-help support groups. These time-tested methods create lasting changes and teach people new ways of dealing with situations in a healthier, more empathic way. By neglecting these self-work habits, a person runs the risk of becoming a dry drunk.
Signs of a Dry Drunk
How do you know whether somebody is truly in recovery or suffering from dry drunk syndrome? Usually, it’s not particularly difficult to tell, as long as you have a good understanding of what recovery should look like. But understanding the signs of a dry drunk may help you to make that determination. The signs of a dry drunk include:
- Being stuck in their ways
- Refusing to engage in recovery communities or activities
- Not wanting to participate in therapy
- Lack of interest in hobbies or activities
For people experiencing dry drunk symptoms, the reason is generally clear: they have removed alcohol from their lives but haven’t worked to find any way to fill that void. They have subtracted a harmful behavior but haven’t added anything healthy to compensate.
Dry Drunk Behavior
Like the signs of a dry drunk, dry drunk behavior can appear in many ways. Certain actions can indicate that somebody is suffering from dry drunk syndrome, while inaction may be a sign in itself. A few examples of dry drunk behavior include:
- Constantly feeling sorry for themselves
- Seeking to be the center of attention
- Romanticizing past substance use
- Dismissing people’s suggestions for how to feel better
Most of all, the hallmark behavior of a dry drunk is not doing enough. They may refuse to go to treatment, look down upon people in recovery, or feel as though they are constantly a victim. The only way to break this pattern of behavior is to start working on self-improvement, either through therapy, self-help groups, or professional addiction treatment.
Start Addiction Treatment at The Bluffs Today
At The Bluffs, we place great emphasis on helping people heal in all aspects of their lives. Often, drinking is just a symptom of a greater set of personal struggles, and abstinence is not enough for people to build healthy and worthwhile lives in recovery.
From the moment a person enters our program to the day they leave, we strive to help them discover the value that practicing the self-work of recovery can bring and encourage them to maintain these practices well into their recovery.
When you’d like to start professional addiction treatment, reach out to our team by calling 850.374.5331. Recovery is about so much more than abstinence, and The Bluffs can help you to find true joy in your sobriety.