Addiction and Abuse 2018-10-18T14:49:07+00:00

Addiction and Abuse

Addiction and Abuse

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Causes of Alcoholism

Alcoholism is something that develops slowly and without warning. Consequently, many individuals are in denial or do not realize they are already alcoholics. In most cases addiction started from:

  • Social Pressure.- For most alcoholics, addiction started through social pressure from friends, that continuously encourage them to drink even if they didn’t intend to. Eventually, by falling over and over into social pressure, drinking becomes a normal part of their lives.
  • Mental illness.-For Others, alcohol is a way to deal with mental illness like anxiety, depression, or low self-esteem. Some even go as far as combing medication such as Klonopin or oxycodone with alcohol in an attempt to treat their mental illness. Even if this seems to work in the beginning, their mental issues can worsen, once they become dependent on alcohol.
  • Genetics.-Meanwhile, research from the NIAAA suggests that alcoholism can be related to an individuals genetics. Because some individuals have a genetic predisposition that allows them to have more tolerance to alcohol than others. Making it more likely that this individual will develop alcoholic tendencies.
  • Environmental Factors.-The environment an individual lives in can also contributes to alcoholism. For example, a child who grew up with alcoholic family members is more likely to become an alcoholic or exhibit alcoholic tendencies. Children with such a domestic life would perceive drinking as a normal way to cope with stress.

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Causes of Alcoholism

Alcoholism is something that develops slowly and without warning. Consequently, many individuals are in denial or do not realize they are already alcoholics. In most cases addiction started from:

  • Social Pressure.- For most alcoholics, addiction started through social pressure from friends, that continuously encourage them to drink even if they didn’t intend to. Eventually, by falling over and over into social pressure, drinking becomes a normal part of their lives.
  • Mental illness.-For Others, alcohol is a way to deal with mental illness like anxiety, depression, or low self-esteem. Some even go as far as combing medication such as Klonopin or oxycodone with alcohol in an attempt to treat their mental illness. Even if this seems to work in the beginning, their mental issues can worsen, once they become dependent on alcohol.
  • Genetics.-Meanwhile, research from the NIAAA suggests that alcoholism can be related to an individuals genetics. Because some individuals have a genetic predisposition that allows them to have more tolerance to alcohol than others. Making it more likely that this individual will develop alcoholic tendencies.
  • Environmental Factors.-The environment an individual lives in can also contributes to alcoholism. For example, a child who grew up with alcoholic family members is more likely to become an alcoholic or exhibit alcoholic tendencies. Children with such a domestic life would perceive drinking as a normal way to cope with stress.

 

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Signs of Alcohol Abuse

Drinking too much alcohol can result not only in negative effects in the body of the person such as slurred speech or difficulty standing up or walking but it can also affect someone’s social life and even compromise their safety and the safety of the people around them.

 On average, alcoholism often begins in a person’s early 20s and is accompanied by frequent heavy drinking. This behavior has, as a result, increased tolerance to alcohol and eventually presents social and health problems. Being able to recognize when some is abusing alcohol can help you determine if they require help.

Common signs of alcohol abuse include the following:

  • Slurry/incoherent speech
  • Lack of body coordination (ex. unable to walk in a straight line)
  • Disorientation and confusion
  • Agitation, anxiety or panic attacks
  • Recklessness and inability to control emotion
  • Spacing out (ex. staring blankly into space)
  • The occurrence of alcohol withdrawal symptoms
  • Drinking more because you already became tolerant to small amounts of alcohol

Meanwhile, some people may not experience the above signs after drinking too much alcohol. However, an individual can still be considered as an alcoholic if they do the following:

  • Drink at least one alcoholic beverage per day
  • Drink alcohol just because you feel the need to
  • Drink an excessive amount of alcohol, especially during social events, gatherings, etc.
  • Your drinking becomes the main concern of your loved ones
  • Your drinking affects your job, quality of work, and your hobbies

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The Dangers of Alcohol Abuse

As mentioned, drinking is a normal part of our culture, regardless of whatever alcoholic beverages you prefer. However, many people don’t realize the long-term effects of excessive alcohol use. Whether you are frequent, a social/occasional, or a first-time drinker, the effects of alcohol are undeniable.

Several studies have also revealed that the younger a person begins to consume alcohol, the higher the risk they possess of developing an alcohol dependency. Likewise, young adults, including teenagers are also prone to have issues with brain development. Moreover, alcoholism can take a toll on an alcoholic’s overall health. For one, specific internal organs such as the liver and brain can be greatly affected.

Long-term alcohol abuse can lead to:

  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Depression
  • Anxiety/panic attacks
  • Uncontrollable bursts of emotion

Commonly Abused Drinks

By definition, an alcoholic beverage is a drink that contains ethanol, a type of alcohol produced by fermentation of grains, fruits, or other sources of sugar. There are different types of alcoholic beverages, all of which are prone to be consumed excessively.

Among these commonly abused alcoholic drinks or beverages include:

  • Beer (includes lager, ale, wheat-based, or fruit-flavored beers)
  • Wine (includes red, white, rose, champagne/sparkling, and fortified wines)
  • Hard Liquor/Spirit (includes vodka, whiskey, rum, gin, tequila, absinthe, and liqueurs)

Such alcoholic beverages vary on alcohol by volume (ABV) levels. For example, beer can range around 2 to 12 percent ABV, while spirits can have 20 to as much as 80 percent ABV levels.

Beer Addiction and Abuse

Beer is an alcoholic drink usually made from water, barley, hops, and yeast and its Alcohol by Volume (ABV) ranges from 2 to 12 percent, making beer the drink with the lowest ABV compared to wine or hard liquor. For this reason, most people, require to drink over three beers to be over the legal driving limit.

 Regardless of this fact, beer has become a significant part of several activities in the American culture, from sporting events to countless games in parties. Especially now, that microbreweries and home brewers have created a wide variety of new flavors drinking beer has become more fashionable. Unfortunately, one side effect of this new trend is that craft beer has a significantly higher amount of alcohol.

 Never the less, regardless if you prefer a craft beer or a traditional one you can be susceptible to an alcohol use disorder. For this reason, it’s important to be aware of signs that could mean you could have alcohol use disorder such as continuing to drink when everyone else has stopped or feeling the need to drink during uncomfortable or boring situations

Wine Addiction and Abuse

Wine is produced by fermenting fruits such as grapes, pomegranates or berries. Depending on the grape type, wines are usually classified in red wines such as merlot, cabernet, pinot noir, and zinfandel and white wines like chardonnay, pinot grigio, riesling, and moscato.

 Regardless of the kind, wine is considered a “classy” drink that is commonly consumed at dinner parties together with appetizers or even the main courses. Nevertheless, wine has a more concentrated amount of alcohol than beer. For example, 5 oz of wine has the same amount of alcohol than 12 oz of beer.

 Another interesting fact about wine is that 59 percent of wine drinkers in the United States are women. However, either gender can abuse this drink. Hence, it is important to limit the amount of wine you are drinking to avoid the potential effects of alcohol abuse.

Liquor Addiction and Abuse

Rum, vodka, tequila, whiskey, and gin are some of the most popular alcoholic drinks for both men and women. The reason for this is because they can be combined with juice and sodas, or consumed “on the rocks,” as is. Giving the person a wide variety of flavors to choose from.

 Unfortunately, liquor has the highest ABV levels among the three major types of alcoholic beverages. As a result, people can get drunk faster and easier than with wine or beer, especially when it’s a mixed drink. Regardless of the type of liquor consumed, alcohol of any kind possesses serious addiction potential.

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Recognizing an Alcohol Addiction

It is said that there are 11 ways to recognize an addiction, as per the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). These include the following:

  1. Lack of control – drinking larger amounts than originally planned for.
  2. Desire to limit use – having the desire to stop abusing alcohol but fails.
  3. Time spent – the person spends a significant amount of time to get his/her hands on the said substance.
  4. Cravings – uncontrollable urge to consume alcohol
  5. Lack of responsibility – alcohol now takes over someone’s life and is even prioritized over other important daily activities
  6. Relationship problems – social and personal relationships are greatly affected due to excessive alcohol usage
  7. Loss of interest – favors alcohol consumption over nurturing social and personal relationships
  8. Dangerous use – continues to consume alcohol despite awareness of its harmful consequences
  9. Worsening situations – continues to consume alcohol despite the presence of overall health problems
  10. Tolerance – more amount of alcohol is consumed to achieve its desired results
  11. (Alcohol) Withdrawal – affects physical and emotional health (ex. anxiety, nausea, vomiting, etc.)

A person is considered to have a severe alcohol disorder when more of the criteria above are met.

Treatment for Alcoholism

When alcohol is taking control over your life or the life of someone you care about, it is important to take back control before it is to late. Thankfully, Mountain Springs Recovery is here to help. Our alcohol detox facility can help you or someone you love recover from alcohol addiction and abuse.

Alcohol rehab facilities employ effective and safe treatments to help the patient recover. An assessment will be applied to determine the history behind a patient’s struggle with alcoholism. Such treatment centers are readily equipped with methods to help patients manage their alcoholic tendencies.

In treating alcohol addiction, one must look for a reliable rehabilitation and treatment center that can help you get free from the shackles of addiction. Mountain Springs Recovery is a reputable rehabilitation facility that can help you or someone you love deal with alcohol addiction. Our friendly personnel will guide you on your way to recovery.

 

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The First Step of Recovery from Alcohol

Every journey starts with the first step. In the case of recovering from alcohol addiction, the first step is alcohol detox. Patients with alcoholic tendencies are prone to having strong withdrawal symptoms. That is why it is important for patients to undergo professional and supervised detoxification.

A mandatory detoxification can help prevent discomfort during the process of alcohol withdrawal. Likewise, this is also to help prevent life-threatening complications among patients.

Alcohol Addiction Medications

Patients may undergo treatment via prescription drugs. Combining prescription medications with therapy can increase the success rate of up to 50 percent. More so, it can also help relieve symptoms of alcohol withdrawal and prevent relapse.

Among commonly prescribed drugs used during treatment include Acamprosate, naltrexone, and disulfiram. These medications mostly aid in reducing alcohol cravings.

Your Journey to Sobriety Starts at Mountain Springs Recovery

Challenges are part of the process of every journey. Our rehab facility can help you overcome those challenges and lead you on your road to recovery. The road to recovery is simply a phone call away. Contact Mountain Springs Recovery today to find out more information about our facility and how we can help you beat alcohol addiction today.

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