Phases of addiction development

Phase 1 - social drinking

  • drinking is a pleasure
  • increased tolerance and desire for alcohol

Phase 2 - warning

  • looking for opportunities to drink
  • initiating drinking rounds
  • feeling better after drinking
  • "life and soul of the party"
  • alcohol brings relief, relieves tension
  • drinking ends with a blackout
  • hidden drinking attempts when alone, to relieve hangover symptoms

Phase 3 - critical

  • remorse, "moral hangover"
  • "hair of the dog" brings relief
  • neglecting the family
  • marital conflicts
  • absence from work
  • justifying drinking by numerous [social] occasions
  • increase of aggressiveness, in trouble with the law
  • irregular eating
  • neglecting one’s own appearance
  • libido disorders
  • drinking binges alternating with periods of total abstinence to improve health and prove "strong will"
  • taking oaths of abstinence
  • sense of emptiness and helplessness

Phase 4 - chronic

  • periods of prolonged drunkenness
  • morning drinking - "giant hangover"
  • getting drunk alone
  • decrease in alcohol tolerance
  • reaching for non-consumable alcohol forms
  • breakup of family ties
  • taking things from home to sell and stealing - to get alcohol
  • professional and social debasement
  • alcohol dementia - "secondary illiteracy"
  • drinking becomes the only goal in life
  • alcohol psychosis - "delirium"
  • alcoholic epilepsy
  • somatic diseases - polyneuropathy, liver cirrhosis
  • extreme exhaustion