Hayden Panettiere had ‘hit rock bottom’ – A recovery coach on the signs of alcoholism

Nashville star Hayden Panettiere gushes about motherhood on Good Morning America

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“If you are drinking every day, or binging regularly, and you know it’s not a case of take it or leave it, there is a dependency,” warned Janey Lee Grace. As for Panettiere, who found fame starring as the cheerleader Claire Bennet in Heroes, “alcohol became something [she] almost couldn’t live without”. In a candid interview, the mum-of-one shared: “I would have the shakes when I woke up and could only function with sipping alcohol.”

Continuing with the substance abuse, doctors cautioned Panettiere that her “liver was going to give out”. This was the wake-up call that the actress needed to finally enter rehab, but she told People magazine that choosing not to drink is “an everyday choice”. “I’m checking in with myself all the time,” Panettiere revealed.

When a person begins to slip into alcohol dependency, Janey Lee Grace said they might experience:

  • A lack of energy
  • Poor sleep
  • Bloating
  • Digestive issues
  • Anxiety
  • Depression.

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“If there is compromised liver health then eyes start to look yellow, a sign of liver damage,” added recovery coach Janey Lee Grace. Like Panettiere, most people begin drinking in their teenage years, but it can take up to two decades, or more, before a person begins to realise that they have an issue. “In the UK, we tend to think of those at ‘rock bottom’ who need rehab, and everyone else are happy social drinkers, but it’s not the case,” said Janey Lee Grace. “Anyone can go down the slippery slope unless you catch sight early enough, that life is better without alcohol.

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A post shared by Hayden Panettiere (@haydenpanettiere)

“Not enough emphasis is put on the joy of being alcohol free… focus only on what you will be gaining… [from] health, self esteem, a sense of purpose, authenticity, becoming kinder, and more able to set boundaries.” If you notice somebody close to you is drinking too much, “start by having a conversation”. Janey Lee Grace recommends getting in contact with charities, such as:

  • Alcohol Change UK
  • NACOA (for children of alcoholic parents).

“Ultimately, nagging someone probably won’t make them change,” said Janey Lee Grace. “It can be case of tough love sometimes, as you don’t want to end up being an ‘enabler’.”

The worsening signs of alcohol dependency

Aside from physical manifestations of an alcohol dependency, Janey Lee Grace warned that an addiction could be growing if you feel you “need alcohol to function”. Drinking secretly, experiencing relationships issues, and generally feeling unhappy could be signs of a strengthening addiction.

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A post shared by Hayden Panettiere (@haydenpanettiere)

“Recognise that you can be free from this trap,” said Janey Lee Grace. “Ask for support and help, get connected, put the work in, it’s worth it.” Janey Lee Grace is a recovery coach, trained in NLP, EFT and Family Constellations, who has given a TEDx talk Sobriety Rocks – Who Knew! She is the author of Happy Healthy Sober – Ditch The Booze And Take Control Of Your Life. And Janey Lee Grace is the founder of The Sober Club, a community for people drinking more than they want to.

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