"I was a ballroom-by-day type girl and then party or club goer at night for 10 years in a row," Burke, 37, began, noting that she "didn't start drinking" until she was 21.
"I lived a very Olympic lifestyle I guess, when I competed before moving to Los Angeles to do 'Dancing with the Stars,' and there was none of that," she recalled. "But I know that feeling, my coach is an addict."
"I had the all or nothing, black or white, no gray," she continued, adding that she was "mean" to herself.
The two-time Mirrorball champion shared that she would make "promises" to herself in an attempt to drink less, but it didn't work.
"I made promises to myself I would never drink alone, then that started to go away," Burke said. "Or I wouldn't drink before 5 p.m., no drinking on weekdays. It just never stopped. It became so that my tolerance was just nothing got me drunk."
Vargas -- who is also in recovery from alcoholism and has been sober for seven years -- then brought up that Burke has previously said "being a functioning alcoholic was the scariest part." As Vargas noted, at the time, Burke would have been drinking and still managed to show up and perform on "DWTS."
"All I can say about that is my thoughts never got in my way when I was drinking because I was numbing. I was drinking because I was numbing -- and we all know that that's a scary place," Burke recalled. "It was survival mode constantly, seven days a week for me. I needed to just to get through this day."
The ballroom dancer went on to note that she didn't have one particular "crash and burn" moment, sharing that in her experience "crashing and burning is that feeling of just emptiness, of feeling there's no purpose."
She added, "From the inside out, if you were to flip me, I felt disgusting. There was nothing there. I had no identity."
When asked if she labels herself as an "alcoholic," Burke said, "I'm definitely an alcoholic and addict. Absolutely. Yes, 100 percent."
While speaking with Vargas, Burke also opened up about what ultimately led to her decision to stop drinking. As she's previously shared, the ABC star said she quit following her engagement party to now-husband Matthew Lawrence, and after the death of her father, who was also an alcoholic.
However, during her chat with Vargas, Burke revealed more details, suggesting that a pivotal moment came after she witnessed her dad having whiskey while he was on his deathbed in a Thailand hospital.
She explained, "I knew that if I didn't stop and make a promise to myself to stop drinking that I was going to fall down the rabbit hole of having to find the nearest facility and have it just be something where I would crash and burn."
And after she returned home, Burke said her body began "reacting in a different way to the alcohol" and she began getting "full-on" allergic reactions to alcohol, including one during her engagement party.
"Obviously subconsciously something ... it was my body rejecting all this poison after drowning with it for so many years," she explained. "And then our engagement party happened. Kym Herjavec hosted it, and I took one fireball shot and I felt so angry and broke out into hives, and then I just quit that night of our engagement party."
Burke -- who is now three years sober -- also spoke to Vargas about her friendship with her Backstreet Boys'AJ McLean and how he helped her with her sobriety. Burke said that McClean -- who is also sober -- brought up Alcoholics Anonymous "quite a bit" when they were partners on the last season of "DWTS." (Burke shared back in July that she had attended her first meeting.)
"When we danced together, I wasn't part of a program, and nor did AJ shove it down my throat, but he mentioned it quite a bit," Burke said. "I've been in therapy consistently three times a week, but there's nothing like the program."
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact the SAMHSA substance abuse helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.