Not everyone who moderates or discontinues the use of alcohol will experience cravings during the withdrawal process. That said, they are a commonplace phenomenon and most likely to affect those who meet National Institute on Alcohol and Alcoholism’s heavy drinking criteria.
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders is an American Psychiatric Association publication that classifies mental disorders like alcohol use disorder for diagnosis and treatment. In 2013, the fifth edition of this diagnostic tool (DSM-5) included alcohol cravings as a diagnostic criterion for alcoholism.
If you experience cravings, this does not necessarily mean that you have alcohol use disorder, although you might consider consulting a mental health professional to voice your concerns. This guide outlines how to stop alcohol cravings and also shows you what to do if it’s too late and cravings strike.