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All About Alcoholism

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As pointed out in various alcohol abuse facts and alcoholism facts and statistics, alcohol abuse and alcoholism have become considerable problems in the industrialized countries throughout the world.

Paradoxically, the more "developed" and technologically advanced a country becomes, the more helpless it seems to be concerning the societal and personal difficulties that are directly or indirectly associated with alcoholism.

It therefore seems that the industrialized nations of the world need to look hard at the various facts and statistics on alcoholism and develop different forms of "alcoholism help" to address this precarious situation.

It is also apparent that there is a need to answer some basic questions about this disease, such as "what is alcoholism?" and "what are the alcoholism warning signs and alcoholism symptoms that a 'problem drinker' should be aware of?"

Another question that also needs to be addressed and answered is how alcoholism and depression reinforce one another. Obviously, more relevant alcohol abuse and alcoholism facts are needed in this area.

For individuals who are alcohol dependent, it is critical for them to find out relevant alcoholism facts and what can they do to receive the alcoholism help they require.

Along this line of thought, it is therefore important for the leaders of the developed countries of the world to discover efficient and effective ways to help their people become more aware of and learn how to avoid the short-term as well as the long-term health, financial, employment, and relationships problems that most alcohol dependent individuals experience.

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For Most Individuals, Drinking Alcohol Is Pleasant

For the vast majority of people, drinking alcohol is a pleasant experience. This is especially the case when people are engaged in recreational and social activities and when their drinking behavior can be considered as "moderate."

Moderate alcohol use can be defined as having up to two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women. In most situations, moreover, drinking in moderation is not harmful for most adults.

A relatively large number of individuals, however, simply cannot have any alcoholic beverages because of the obstacles they experience when drinking.

Since roughly 14 million Americans abuse alcohol or are alcoholic, it can be deduced that the group of individuals who should not or can not drink alcohol is a sizeable and a considerable amount of people.

And it is this group of individuals who need to learn how to reduce or eliminate their alcoholism symptoms and get the alcoholism help they need.

To drive the point home more forcefully, consider the following: according to recent alcoholism research, it has been found that roughly 53 percent of the adults in the United States have articulated that one or more of their close relatives has a drinking problem that requires professional alcoholism help.

What is Alcoholism?

Many people have friends, relatives, or family members who are alcoholic. What exactly, does this mean? Stated differently, what is alcoholism?

Also known as alcohol dependency, alcohol addiction, and alcohol dependence, alcoholism is a progressive debilitating disease that includes the following alcoholism symptoms:

  • Craving: A strong and continuing compulsion or need to drink.

  • Tolerance: The need to drink increasing amounts of alcohol in order to "feel the buzz" or to "get high."

  • Physical dependence: Withdrawal symptoms when a person stops drinking after a period of excessive drinking. Such symptoms include: anxiety, sweating, nausea, and "the shakes."

  • Loss of control: The inability to limit one's drinking over time or on any given occasion.

The Difference Between Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

Some Basic Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Facts. Due to the fact that the two terms are so similar, a number of people ask the following questions: what is alcohol abuse, what is alcoholism, and what is the difference between the two medical conditions?

Many people incorrectly think that alcohol abuse and alcoholism are the same. In a word, this is somewhat understandable, but incorrect.

As a way of clarification, it can be pointed out that alcohol abuse, unlike alcoholism, does not include physical dependence, an extremely strong desire for alcohol, or the need to drink larger amounts of alcohol in order to feel "high" or to experience a "buzz."

Alcohol abuse is defined as a pattern of drinking that effects in one or more of the following situations in a twelve-month time period:

  • Going through recurring alcohol-related legal problems. Examples include getting arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, for damaging someone's property, or for physically hurting someone while drunk.

  • Drinking in instances that can result in physical injury. Examples include driving a vehicle or operating machinery.

  • Continued drinking in spite of ongoing relationship obstructions that are the result of drinking.

  • Failure to attend to important responsibilities at work, home, or school.

The Damaging and Ruinous Effects of Alcoholism

According to alcoholism facts and research, the consequences of alcoholism are not only serious, but are often terminal. For instance, excessive drinking can increase the risk for certain cancers, such as cancer of the liver, rectum, colon, larynx, esophagus, and the kidneys.

Heavy drinking can also lead to immune system obstructions, cirrhosis of the liver, harm to the fetus while the mother is pregnant, chronic alcoholism, and brain damage.

Regrettably, it appears that many people are not aware of this kind of alcoholism information.

Moreover, drinking alcohol increases the risk of death from motor vehicle accidents as well as work-related and recreational and accidents and injuries. Not only this, but homicides and suicides are more likely to committed by individuals who have been drinking alcohol.

And finally, alcoholism facts and research have shown that there is a strong correlation between alcoholism and depression. When this is the case, moreover, the person needs to be treated for both medical problems.

In a summary, then, the following represents some of the negative consequences that are directly or indirectly related to alcoholism: failed health, wife battering, injuries, child abuse, destroyed lives, illnesses, fatalities, and broken homes.

Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Statistics

Unfortunately, the full scope of the deleterious results of alcoholism are not easily recognized unless relevant alcohol abuse facts and alcoholism statistics and warning signs are presented.

In short, statistics on alcoholism and alcohol abuse facts reveal the kind of "information on alcoholism and alcohol abuse that can make a real impact on people's consciousness.

With this in mind, the following alcohol abuse and alcoholism statistics are listed below:

  • 3 million Americans over the age of 60 are alcoholics or have serious drinking issues.

  • According to a study undertaken in 2002, at least 762,000 children that are born each year have been exposed to alcohol during the mother's pregnancy.

  • In the United States during 2004, 16,694 deaths occurred as a result of alcohol-related motor-vehicle crashes. This amount was roughly 39% of all traffic fatalities. This amounts to one alcohol-related death every 31 minutes.

  • The 9.6% of adult alcoholics drink 25% of the alcohol that is consumed by all adult drinkers.

  • Every day in the United States more than 13,000 children and teens take their first drink.

  • American youth who drinking before the of age 15 are four times more likely to become alcoholics than young people who do not drink before the age of 21.

  • Every year, 1,400 American college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die from alcohol-related injuries, including motor vehicle accidents.

  • The 25.9% of underage drinkers who are alcohol abusers and alcohol dependent drink 47.3% of the alcohol that is consumed by all underage drinkers.
  • Alcohol is the third leading cause of preventable deaths in the United States.

  • Alcohol dependence and alcohol abuse cost the United States an estimated $220 billion in 2005. This dollar amount was more than the cost associated with cancer ($196 billion) and obesity ($133 billion).

  • Every year in the U.S. more than 150,000 college students develop health problem that are alcohol-related.

  • 66% of the population in the United States consumes alcohol.

  • 3.1 million Americans, roughly 1.4% of the population 12 and older, received treatment for alcoholism and alcohol-related obstructions in 1997.

Alcoholism Symptoms

What are some of the signs or indications that an individual is alcohol dependent? Stated differently, what are the alcoholism symptoms that define this disease?

What alcoholism symptoms can an individual look for and identify regarding alcohol dependence?

To help answer these questions, the following will be a listing of the identifiable and predictable alcoholism symptoms that exist in the four stages of alcoholism.

Alcoholism Symptoms in the First Stage of Alcoholism

The following characterizes some of the more common alcoholism symptoms and behaviors in the first stage of alcoholism:

  • Lack of recognition by the individual that he or she is in the early stages of a progressive disease.

  • Gross Drinking Behavior - more frequent drinking of greater amounts.

  • A conscious effort to seek out more drinking opportunities.

  • An ability to drink great amounts of alcohol without any apparent impairment

Alcoholism Symptoms in the Second Stage of Alcoholism

The following list typifies some of the regularly occurring alcoholism symptoms and behaviors in the second stage of alcoholism:

  • Sneaking extra drinks before social events.

  • Unsuccessful attempts to stop drinking.

  • More frequent blackouts.

  • Physical problems increase.

  • Gulping the first few drinks to feel the "high" faster.

  • Chronic hangovers.

  • Drinking because of dependence rather than for stress relief.

Alcoholism Symptoms in the Third Stage of Alcoholism

The following characterizes some of the key alcoholism symptoms and behaviors in the third stage of alcoholism:

  • Neglect of necessities such as food.

  • Avoidance of family and friends.

  • The development of system of excuses for their drinking behavior.

  • Half-hearted attempts at seeking alcoholism help.

  • The loss of control has become a pattern.

  • Increased tremors.

  • An increase in problems with the law (such as multiple DUIs).

Alcoholism Symptoms in the Fourth Stage of Alcoholism

The following list typifies some of the main alcoholism symptoms and behaviors in the fourth stage of alcoholism:

  • Auditory and visual hallucinations.

  • "The shakes."

  • Unreasonable resentments and hostility toward others.

  • Continual loss of control.

  • Benders, or lengthy intoxications.

  • Moral deterioration.

  • The "DTs."

A review of the alcoholism symptoms presented above displays a host of problems that affect virtually every aspect of the alcoholic's life. In fact, most individuals with these symptoms don't need to ask, "what is alcoholism" because they are living the answer to this question every day.

More than anything, however, these alcoholism symptoms point to the need for the alcohol dependent person to get the proper alcoholism help he or she requires in order to stop drinking, detoxify his or her body, and start on the road to alcohol recovery.

The Need for Alcoholism Help and Alcoholism Facts

It is important to stress the significance of the following: if you observe your friends or family members demonstrating any of the above symptoms or behaviors, consider the fact that they may need professional alcoholism help.

More precisely, your family members or friends who are problem drinkers may need to enter into a hospital or a an alcoholism rehab facility where they can get the alcoholism treatment that works best for their drinking situation.

Sadly, until alcohol dependent individuals truly want to quit drinking and seek alcoholism help, their hope for sobriety and for alcohol recovery will be difficult at best and impossible at worst.

Often, people who are not problem drinkers or who don't drink at all fail to grasp the fact that alcohol addicted individuals cannot use willpower or self-control to refrain from drinking.

Stated more precisely, in the vast majority of situations, alcoholism has more to do with an alcoholic's uncontrollable need for alcohol and very little to do with strong character, willpower, or fighting the temptations to engage in drinking behavior.

In fact, the desire and craving to drink for the alcoholic can be as strong as his or her need for necessities such as shelter, food, or water.

Fortunately, a number of alcohol dependent individuals do decide to quit drinking, they receive the alcoholism help they need, they remain sober, and they make progress every day in their struggles to stay on the road to alcohol recovery.

Is There An Alcohol Dependency Cure?

While there is no known cure for alcohol dependency according to the alcoholism and alcohol abuse facts and research, recovery from alcoholism is, fortunately, possible. While a relatively small number of alcohol dependent individuals are able to recover from alcoholism without professional alcoholism help or assistance, the alcoholism research literature reveals that many, if not most, alcoholics need medical treatment, counseling, and education for their addiction.

The good news, however, is this: through therapy, rehab, support, and professional alcoholism help, many alcoholics are able to stay "safe and sober" as they work on reestablishing their lives.

Alcoholism Videos

We have included some alcoholism videos so that you can see and hear directly from various people about their struggles with this disease.

If you, a family member, or one of your friends has a "drinking problem," seeing what others have gone through and how they attained successful recovery is much more "real" than any information or alcoholism statistics you can read about.

Furthermore, watching these videos may help you understand what others with a drinking problem experienced, what alcoholism symptoms they went through, and how they addressed their alcoholism warning signs and went about getting the alcoholism help they needed. So make sure you look at these very fine videos!

Conclusion: All About Alcoholism

Alcoholism Facts and Statistics. The facts and statistics on alcoholism show how truly sad it is in this "enlightened age" that alcoholism has become such a major problem in the United States as well in the other developed countries in the world.

It is apparent from the overwhelming number of people who suffer from the damaging and dangerous effects of this disease that a lot more people need to be asking the question, "what is alcoholism and what can I do in my life to address and overcome this horrendous disease?"

Ironically, the more technologically advanced and "developed" a nation becomes, the more easily it becomes exposed to the societal and personal obstacles that are directly or indirectly related to alcoholism.

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Perhaps the alcoholism symptoms and the alcoholism warning signs that alcoholics experience will motivate some of them to sincerely want to quit drinking and seek professional alcoholism help.

Along this same line of reasoning, hopefully those who experience alcoholism and depression will be encouraged to get professional treatment for both medical illnesses.

Whatever the circumstances, however, it is certain that without adequate and top-quality alcoholism help, most of the alcohol addicted people in the world will continue to experience alcoholism symptoms as they progress through the stages of this disease.

In short, the people of the world need more relevant alcohol abuse and alcoholism facts, alcohol abuse and alcoholism education and training, and other preventative measures if they are to become more aware of ways to evade or substantially reduce the dangerous, unhealthy, and at times, the terminal outcomes of alcoholism.

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