The term “functioning alcoholic” is common, with individuals inside and outside of the addiction recovery sphere hearing it at least once in their lives. However, noticing signs of functioning alcoholism within yourself can be more challenging. Because the typical functioning alcoholic still maintains their daily tasks and responsibilities while excessively drinking, they may believe they do not have a drinking problem. However, it is only a matter of time before their actions catch up with them. By learning the signs of functioning alcoholism, you can better identify them in yourself and get the help you need for a successful recovery.


High Tolerance


One of the earliest signs of alcoholism is when a person develops a high tolerance to the substance. If you find that you can drink copious amounts of alcohol without having the typical inhibiting side effects and still appear sober, this could indicate that you are developing or have functioning alcoholism. 


Needing Alcohol to Feel Normal


Having an occasional drink after work or at dinner with friends is not necessarily cause for concern. However, consuming alcohol to feel “normal” is a strong indication that you are dependent on the substance.


Drinking During Work or School


Those classified as functioning alcoholics may drink during work or school, including during their lunch break. Individuals that can control their alcohol consumption typically do not have problems with this, but you may be a functioning alcoholic if you find yourself drinking throughout the day.


Justifying Your Drinking


When you are still maintaining your daily responsibilities while drinking, it can be all too easy to justify your actions. Because you aren’t struggling, you believe you can continue drinking. If you’ve had a rough day, you think you deserve a drink. Constantly coming up with justifications for drinking excessively is a primary sign of functioning alcoholism.


While the idea of a functioning alcoholic is common in many people’s minds, few can identify symptoms of functioning alcoholism in themselves. Whether due to denial or lack of knowledge, failure to recognize these signs can lead to adverse consequences in a person’s life. At Alta Loma Transformational Services, we understand that everyone handles alcohol and alcoholism differently. You don’t have to fit the stereotypical image of alcoholism to need help, and you shouldn’t wait until things get worse to seek treatment. Contact our Georgetown, TX facility today to learn more about our programs at (866) 457-3843.