Alcohol dependence is a disease that is often progressive and fatal. Although alcoholism tends to run in families, it is influenced by both genetic and environmental factors. An individual who is dependent upon alcohol typically uses it to avoid personal and social factors in his or her life. The four symptoms of alcohol dependence include:
* craving for alcohol
* inability to reduce or stop alcohol consumption
* experience withdrawal symptoms when stopping alcohol consumption
* increased tolerance of alcohol (takes more to get the same effect)
You may have a problem with alcohol if you answer yes to any of the following:
* Drinking in the morning
* Drinking alone
* Drinking to feel socially comfortable
* Drinking to the point of intoxication
* Drinking that results in blackouts or memory loss
* Drinking that results in injuries, accidents, or aggressive behavior
* Drinking to deal with pressure or emotional problems
* Getting drunk regularly
* Using alcohol heavily in risky situations
* Your professional or school work has suffered
* You plan your day around drinking
* You feel guilty about your drinking
If you are concerned that you may have a drinking problem, discuss this with your physician or a mental health professional.
Alcohol is the most commonly used and widely abused psychoactive drug in the world.
Due to a drinking problem one's life expectancy is reduced up to 10 years.
Even if you are not an alcoholic, abusing alcohol can still have negative affects.
Children of alcoholics are four times more likely to become alcoholics than children of non-alcoholics.
Rates of alcohol problems are highest among adults ages 18-29.
More men than women are alcohol dependent.
Heavy & chronic drinking
- can harm virtually every organ in the body
- is the single most important cause of illness and death from liver disease
- depresses the immune system
- is associated with cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and hypertension