An intoxicating ingredient found in liquor, beer and wine, alcohol is a depressant born from a combination of fermented yeast, sugar and starch. Rapidly absorbed through the digestive system, alcohol quickly enters the blood stream and temporarily alters the central nervous system.
However, the effects of alcohol consumption are not exclusive to the central nervous system, as the further effects of this depressant will extend to every organ in the body – including a fetus, if present. The first noticeable changes after alcohol consumption can be seen in motor and brain functions, while prolonged use can lead to serious health issues such as liver disease, stroke and cancer.
Alcoholism occurs when an individual can no longer control their drinking, even when it causes problems. Many think of alcohol abuse as binge drinking, which does lead to numerous health and safety risks, but it is possible to be an alcoholic even when drinking only occasionally if the drinking urges cannot be controlled or squelched.
Considered a diagnosable disease, alcohol dependence can be characterized by strong and uncontrollable cravings and continued use with disregard to personal safety or physical health. The inability to control or limit alcohol consumption can lead to financial problems, relationship trouble with family and friends, and failure to fulfill obligations at home, work, and school.
Alcohol Abuse: Signs and Symptoms
Desired intoxication levels may vary with alcohol abusers, as some only experience moderate changes in motor and cognitive function while others will drink until they experience periods of blackouts, or blocks of time they cannot remember. Regardless of this preference, recognizing an alcohol addiction is not that difficult when you know the physical signs and symptoms:
- Frequently smelling like beer or other alcohol
- Anxiety, mood swings and periods of insomnia
- Inability to control physical shakes and tremors
- An increased tolerance to beer, wine or liquor
- Trying to limit or quit drinking unsuccessfully
- Lack of critical thinking skills, memory loss and/or blackouts
- Sweating, nausea, vomiting and other typical withdrawal symptoms
Other problematic issues closely related to an individual’s lack of control during alcohol abuse include:
- Loss of time due to obtaining, drinking or recovering from alcohol
- Drinking even after causing interpersonal, spousal, work and social problems
- Using alcohol when it is unsafe such as work, driving, swimming, diving or other
- Failure to remember or take part in important work, social and family activities
- Making alcohol purchases instead of fulfilling basic needs when in financial duress
Statistics on Alcohol Addiction
Alcohol consumption kills more young people between the ages of 15 to 24 than all other substances combined. Alcohol abuse is also prevalent among this same age group, affecting both male and female demographics about equally. Among adults, there is a slight increase in male alcohol abuse of approximately two percent.
Alcohol is the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the U.S., affecting nearly 90 thousand people annually. Of this number, about thirty percent of deaths represent alcohol-related driving casualties while approximately 40 percent were caused by liver disease and cirrhosis. One in three liver transplants performed yearly are due to prolonged alcohol use.
Through research it has also been determined that alcohol consumption increases cancer risks in the mouth, esophagus, larynx, pharynx, breast, liver and colon. Miscarriages, stillbirth and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome are all issues faced today when drinking during pregnancy.
Alcohol Detox for Clean Living
The first steps toward recovering from an alcohol addiction is recognizing the problem and seeking help from qualified professionals. Whether loved ones intervene for a change, or an individual becomes fed up and decides to face his problems head-on, an alcohol detox program can help you take control of your life and well-being.
Call Toll Free 1-844-675-8731 for a new beginning!