(CBS Chicago) — It’s the way many women relax at the end of a busy day: having a nice glass of wine. But, when does when one glass become one glass too many?
Michelle is a typical mom who drank wine, like a lot of her friends.
“I remember having a glass of wine, giving her a bath, fixing dinner. I didn’t really think anything of it,” she said.
But over time, she started drinking too much.
“I had girlfriends who were mothers who kinda did the same thing but I knew that it was too much for me,” she said.
Wendy Walsh had a similar story.
“Most of my friends were saying they were drinking a half a bottle a day. I thought that’s okay, that’s what everyone does,” she said.
But Michelle says now, watch out.
“You may think you’re taking the edge off, getting relaxed when really it’s becoming another problem.”
While it’s not necessarily alcoholism, wine drinking does become a problem when it begins to affect your daily life and your responsibilities, says psychologist Lyuba Bobova.
“If you notice that your habit is getting you to bed later, that you are tired in the morning, forgetting certain meetings,” Bobova said.
The scary part is that many women don’t realize how much they’re drinking. A glass of wine while cooking, one with dinner, one after, you can develop a tolerance.
Bobova warns, “That’s why people have a difficult time continuing to drink just one or two and may start with three or four.”
Women metabolize alcohol differently from men so to avoid health problems, the Centers for Disease Control says that women should only have one glass of wine a day and that one glass should be just five ounces.
Wendy did not have alcoholism, but when she had trouble cutting back, she went for counselling and found new ways to reduce stress. She meditates now and she’s noticed changes.
“I had more patience with the kids doing homework,” she said, “and I’m sleeping so much better.”
She loves wine and still drinks it, but …”I drink one glass of wine, three times a week.”
Something to remember, women run a higher risk for liver damage than men and even moderate drinking can raise the risk for breast cancer. For more information, visit www.cdc.gov/alcohol/faqs.htm.