Considering Alcoholism as a Disease
If you’re asking if alcoholism is disease, the answer may vary depending on whom you ask. To addiction rehab professionals, alcoholism is chronic disease with genetic, psychological, and environmental factors that influence its development and manifestations. But others think that it’s more useful to view problem drinking as the result of the interaction between a person’s personality and the social context in which they have learned how to drink.
When we discuss alcoholism, we usually say that it is characterized by mental and physical dependence on alcohol. Alcohol treatment, family therapy for alcoholism, cognitive behavioral therapy, and other psychological treatments can help. But the question remains: who is most prone to alcoholic drinking? And how can an individual determine if they are an alcoholic?
Let us discuss what alcoholism is. Alcohol affects an individual’s brain, which affects common sense, judgment, and the choices a person makes every day. Alcoholism has repercussions for both the mental and physical condition of the alcoholic. If a person continues his alcoholic behaviors, he/she will eventually die from abusing alcohol.
How can you know if an individual is alcoholic? A good measuring stick is if someone consumes more than three alcoholic drinks in one sitting, and drinks more than once or twice a week. Alcoholics share many commonalities. They can’t stop drinking after one or two drinks. They continue to drink after having a memory blackout. They continue to drink even though it makes them feel depressed or anxious or adds to another health problem. They still drink even though it causes trouble in their family. They drink longer than intended. They give up or cut back on activities that are important or interesting in order to drink more. They may have been arrested more than once, been held at the police station, or had other legal problems because of drinking. They have spent a lot of time drinking or being sick or recuperating from hangovers. Or they try more than once to cut down on drinking, or to stop all together, but they can’t.
So who becomes an alcoholic? Anyone who drinks has the possibility of becoming an alcoholic. Alcoholism can occur to anybody, but those who have been abusing alcohol on a pretty regular basis are more likely to succumb to the disease of alcoholism.
Alcohol Addiction Recovery Center acknowledges that alcoholism can be a dual-diagnosis disease, attacking the body physically while it contributes to mental disorders at the same time. Alcoholism can cause liver failure, kidney failure, and other life threatening health complications. In time, alcohol can cause wet brain syndrome wherein alcohol will affect the brain so much that it basically doesn’t function at all, severely impairing simple everyday tasks.