Understanding Alcohol Addiction
Since early civilization, people have been brewing and fermenting alcoholic beverages. When consumed in moderate quantities, alcohol is relaxing and in some cases, beneficial to health. It helps facilitate digestion as well as influence blood circulation around the body.
Unfortunately, in excess quantities, alcohol is poisonous and deemed a drug. Studies have shown that 100,000 persons die annually as a result of alcohol-related causes, from car accidents to falls, fires, homicides and suicides. It is estimated that about 17% of men and 8% of women will be dependent on alcohol in their lifetime.
Signs And Effects Of Intoxication
The immediate physical symptoms of alcohol range from mood swings to total loss of hand to eye coordination, vision, balance and speech- any of these can be signs of severe alcohol intoxication, or drunkenness. The effects usually wear off hours after a person ceases to consume alcohol.
The percentage of alcohol in the bloodstream regarded as safe by many law enforcement agencies is .08. Any amount higher can lead to impaired brain functions and eventually unconsciousness. When it is consumed in overdose quantities, it can be fatal.
Many people are often unaware that they are struggling with an addiction. The following are common signs of the problem:
- Lying and hiding about drinking.
- Looking forward to happy hour.
- It is affecting your work responsibilities.
- It is interfering with family obligations.
- It is hurting your relationship or ability to commit.
- You experience black-outs, with no recollection of the last few hours.
- You drink to feel better.
- You constantly drink alone.
- You fidget at social gatherings where there is no alcohol.
- You experience withdrawal symptoms when you stop.
These are just a few, however, they are enough to identify a potential problem in you or a colleague.
Severe Alcohol Addiction
Chronic alcoholism is a progressive, inherently fatal disease typified by a constant craving for, heightened tolerance of, physical dependence on and loss of control over consumption of alcohol. Being physical dependent on alcohol may not be too evident to outsiders.
While some chronic alcoholics get extremely drunk, others are able to handle it and go about their regular activities normally. This doesn’t make it any less dangerous. Chronic alcoholism can lead to the following physical ailments:
- High blood pressure
- Brain and heart dysfunction
- Inflamed blood vessels in the skin
- Severe gastritis
- Recurrent pancreatic disorder
Heavy drinkers often end up with a severe liver disease known as Cirrhosis.
What Causes Alcohol Addiction
Alcoholism can be attributed to a number of factors ranging from genetic, physical, psychological, and environmental to social factors. Genetic factors should be regarded as critical- a person’s likelihood of becoming an alcoholic is three times as much if a parent is an alcoholic.
Alcoholism Treatment Is Available Globally
It is highly recommended to see a professional if you are suffering from alcohol addiction. There are also many accredited treatment facilities that help people become sober. The most important thing is to decide within yourself that you are ready to change.
With the right motivation and support, a person can enjoy life fulfilment as a rehabilitated user.