Definition of Alcoholic: Everything You Need To Know & More




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Even before civilization, people have already been creating alcoholic beverages through brewing and fermenting. Drinking alcoholic drinks has been perceived as an activity that is able to provide a relaxing sensation and even strengthening the heart. Excessive drinking of alcoholic beverages, however, is not beneficial because the effect is similar to how drugs poison the body. Around 18 million people in the U.S., or for every 1 of 12 adults, drink alcohol excessively and are considered chronic alcoholics.

  • Due to excessive drinking of alcoholic beverages, around 100,000 Americans die from it each year.
  • The activity has been associated with the factors that lead to cases of homicides, traffic accidents, and suicides.
  • Many social problems arise from alcohol abuse like habitual absence from work and crimes against people who cannot pay their bills and debts.
  • Domestic problems also arise when there is excessive drinking of alcohol in either of the heads of the family; most often leads to cases of violence against women and children.

From mild mood swings to complete loss of body coordination, difficulty in speaking, and a problem with balance– these are all physical effects of severe alcohol consumption.

If a person decides to stop drinking alcoholic beverages, in a matter of hours the effects may start to wear off gradually. To consider a person intoxicated, law enforcers should detect at least 0.08 percent of alcohol in the bloodstream. Remember, excessive alcohol present in the bloodstream can cause a person to have issues mainly in cognition and may progressively lead to unconsciousness. Alcohol poisoning, as the condition is often described, can be extremely fatal.

The signs of alcohol intoxication cannot be easily observed.

Alcoholism can be categorized by constantly increasing cravings, increasing alcohol tolerance, and diminishing self- control. Excessive drinking may also result in problems related to physical medical conditions, even with those who are considered highly functioning. One of the most common diseases that an excessive drinker may develop is liver cirrhosis wherein alcohol scars the liver.

Other resulting risks can be depression, gastrointestinal bleeding, a disease in the pancreas, increase in blood pressure, congestive heart failure, numbness of the lower limbs accompanied by tingling sensation, and changes in the functions of the brain. Alcoholism may also increase your chances of having chronic gastritis, pneumonia, and tuberculosis.

For men, alcoholism can lead them to impotence.

For pregnant women, there may be physical damages to the fetus. Other not so common diseases include cancers of the larynx, esophagus, pancreas, liver, stomach, breast, and bleeding of the upper part of the stomach. Heavy drinkers may also have nutritional deficiencies due to their improper and unhealthy diets. For every one in five heavy drinkers, impaired liver functions have been recorded.

Alcohol abstinence is a necessary action to combat cravings.

Alcoholics do not usually admit even to themselves that they have an addiction to alcohol. Remember that chronic alcoholism is considered a disease that can afflict anyone and not only the addicted individuals. However, it has become more acceptable in the society that young people binge drink on alcohol. Eventually, an activity with friends will progress to drinking solitary.

The progression of alcoholism is still dependent on genetics, psychological, societal, physical, and environmental factors. Generally, however, it varies to each and every individual. If the individual grew up with an alcoholic parent around, his chance of becoming an alcoholic is four times greater.

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