Alcohol Addiction, Treatment and Recovery
Alcohol is certainly one of the most commonly abused drugs.
Whether it’s beer, wine or liquor… it is easy to get addicted. Many people don’t think that wine or beer is a problem and only think of Alcohol addiction or alcoholics being hard liquor drinkers… but this is far from the truth.
Alcohol is a depressant and can often lead to other destructive behaviors.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a standard drink in the United States contains 0.6 ounces of pure alcohol. This can be found when you consume 12 ounces of beer or 8 ounces of malt liquor. It is also found when you drink 5 ounces of wine or take a shot (1.5 ounces) of 80-proof distilled spirits or gin, rum, vodka, whiskey or other kinds of liquor. It’s important to keep in mind that the type of alcoholic drink consumed does not matter. This means that beer or wine is no safer than liquor. Rather it is the amount of alcohol consumed that can affect a person.
What makes alcohol bad for health is that it involves all bodily organs. When it is ingested, it goes from the mouth to the esophagus and then to the stomach and the small intestine. It is then quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. Since the liver can only metabolize a small amount of the substance at a time, the remaining ethanol are left to move around the rest of the body. Thus, the more alcohol is taken in, the more intense the effect is going to be.
A person who abuses alcohol is at risk for various chronic diseases. Too much alcohol can increase blood pressure, damage the liver, inflame the pancreas and cause liver, mouth, throat, laryngeal and esophageal cancers. In addition, alcohol can also bring about psychological disorders. A pregnant woman who drinks alcohol puts the developing fetus at risk for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and when born, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Alcohol can also impair judgment and as such, can bring about violent behavior like maltreatment of children and homicidal tendencies. Drinking while driving is also a deadly combination as it can potentially bring about motor vehicle accidents and other injuries. This is because alcohol reduces the driver’s reaction time and affects vital driving skills like coordination and judgment. When consumed in huge quantities, alcohol can even lead to coma and death.
Alcohol can also be very addictive. Consuming the substance regularly can lead to alcohol abuse or dependence which can have very detrimental consequences not only to your physical health but also to your mental health and your interpersonal relationships and work as well. You know that you or someone else in your family has a drinking problem if your alcohol consumption is already affecting your relationships with others and even in your feelings. If you feel that you can’t function normally without a drink, you should seek professional help immediately. It’s important to understand that alcoholism is a disorder that can be treated with the proper medical intervention. The earlier treatment is sought, the better the chances of complete recovery from alcohol dependency.
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