Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

What is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism is known to be a chronicle disease, by which the mind and body become addicted to alcohol as a substance.

One of the characteristics of alcoholism is obsessive, repetitive use of alcohol. It can cause serious hindrance to social relations as well as general health.

Alcoholism leads to the build-up of physical tolerance to alcohol. However, alcohol addiction can also develop without having any drastic withdrawal symptoms or changes in tolerance.

When alcohol addiction has developed, it is typical that the person starts to consume it in increasingly larger amounts, over longer periods of time than what was originally intended, back when the person started initially consuming alcohol.

That person becomes gradually incapable of decreasing or stopping the consumption of alcohol despite the willingness to do so and tends to neglect all the negative effects of the alcohol usage on his/her health. Intoxication might cause a person to lose consciousness “pass out” or have memory blackouts.

Alcoholism is also known to cause problems between life-partners, problems at work and financial troubles. In all cases, a considerable amount of the person’s time goes into acquiring or using the alcohol or recovering from the symptoms of using it.

Interest on other things diminishes causing depression, moody behaviour and sleeping disorders. Some of the people suffering from alcoholism consume alcohol alone or secretly from others, some in their homes and some in bars and pubs.

Obsessive, continuous, addictive, or drinking to solely cause intoxication effects are ways to describe alcoholism. In a psychological level, an alcoholic tends to live with a feeling of helplessness in the background relating to the past or current situation he/she is in.

At the biological level, a long-term exposure to alcohol and continuous stress causes changes to the central nervous system. That is why people, who are addicted to alcohol, can’t usually heal themselves from the addiction without professional help.

Changes in the central nervous system, that maintains the addiction heals slowly and takes anywhere between 3 to 6 months without alcohol exposure. Sobriety and stopping the use of alcohol also requires stopping to use it as a stress reliever for other, underlying emotional problems.

For that reason alone, only a week lasting detoxification is not enough to diminish the obsessive need to use alcohol as a way to blow off steam and release psychological pain. Someone who has used alcohol obsessively or addictively for a long time is easily driven to use alcohol again even after a long period of being sober.

Alcoholism takes usually years to develop and people usually do not recognise the symptoms as it is usual in all the cases of slowly progressing addictions. Faster people can recognise it, the sooner they can learn to control the amounts of alcohol which they are consuming and therefore prevent the addition to further developing.

Regular and daily use of alcohol adds the risk of alcohol addiction considerably. Genetically inherited factors also increase the risk of alcoholism, so a person who has suffered as a child the effects of his/her parents’ alcoholism, should be significantly more cautious of their own alcohol consumption.

High tolerance of alcohol or difficulty to identify your own level of intoxication means increased risk of creating alcoholism. A simple way to chart your own possible alcohol addiction is to ask yourself the following four questions.

  • Have you tried to decrease consuming alcohol and failed to do so?

  • Has someone close to you expressed their concern with regards to your alcohol consumption?

  • Are you using alcohol as a way to treat withdrawal symptoms?

  • Do you feel guilty concerning your use of alcohol?

If you answer “yes” to at least two of these questions, you should be concerned with your alcohol consumption and consider a possible addiction to alcohol.

You can also evaluate your addiction to alcohol by asking yourself the following questions: Have you ever felt that your consumption of alcohol is out of control? Are you feeling anxious or worried if you are missing your next dose of alcohol? Are you worried about your alcohol use? Have you tried to quit or decrease your alcohol consumption? Do you feel it is hard to be without alcohol? Are you waiting for occasions, events or places, where alcohol is available? Even one clear “yes” as an answer to any of above questions is often an indication of a developing or present alcohol addiction.

Alcoholism is a disease, which does not discriminate in gender, religion or age, as any person across the globe, no matter their age, social, educational or economic status can develop and suffer from it. Approximately 10% of all the people, who use alcohol, end up become addicted to it at one moment in their lives.

People don’t turn into alcoholics just by drinking. Consuming is necessary of course so that alcoholism can develop, but unreasonable consumption and disturbances in behaviour are caused by the addiction itself.

Genetic heritage, on the other hand, determines which of the users are more resistant to developing this disease and who will be more prone to develop alcohol addiction. Alcoholism will affect and change the person suffering from it.

That person starts to experience and an assortment of negative emotions. He/she can often feel anxiety, shame, guilt, bitterness, sleepiness, and exhaustion.

An alcoholic will always deny the state they are in and often needs to “explain” the consumption of alcohol to the ones around him/her. That person can also easily turn critical and accusing towards the closest, beloved ones, as a self-defence mechanism.

Excuses for using alcohol are often the misconduct of family members, work-related matters or generally negative aspects of life.

Alcoholism consists of all the symptoms what you can expect from a disease:

  • it has a cause
  • it is genetic
  • it’s development, it is known and it can be predicted
  • it develops in stages
  • it has a long treatment process
  • it erodes willpower and weakens the user’s ability to control his/her behaviour by self-control
  • when left untreated it has a 100% mortality rate
  • by applying the existing efficient treatment, increased mortality can be prevented
  • physical, social, psychic and behavioural complications are known

Diagnosing of alcoholism:

  • forms a strong or obsessive need to consume alcohol
  • weakens the ability to resist alcohol consumption and/or the ability to control the amount
  • the person manifests withdrawal symptoms after stopping alcohol consumption
  • increased alcohol tolerance
  • alcohol turns into a centrepiece of everyday life
  • alcohol consumption continues despite all the hindrance which the addicted user is aware of

Consequences of alcoholism are very painful to the family and close ones of the alcoholic. They see the behaviour of the alcoholic as obsessive, irresponsible and untruthful. They often experience that the alcoholic person is lying to them.

They can feel shame and guilt in regards to the situation. They can feel that drinking also controls their lives as well. Therefore, often, the participation of the close ones in the treatment process can be essential to the total wellbeing of the family.

It is also highly recommended that the family members of an alcoholic join special support groups where they can get the help, information, and support which they need throughout this difficult process.

It is also highly recommended that the family members of an alcoholic join special support groups where they can get the help, information, and support which they need throughout this difficult process.

It is possible to heal from alcoholism. Recovering from alcoholism needs sobriety and taking down all the abnormal behaviour-models around the addiction itself.

It is a long and challenging process but the results are incredible. A recovered alcoholic can live a balanced, happy life, where others close to that person can breathe freely. If you think you are an alcoholic get help today and start taking back control over your life. Protection Status
error: Content is protected !!