Other factors that lead to alcoholism include:
- Genetic vulnerability to develop alcoholism or other addictions.
- High levels of stress, anxiety or emotional pain that release stress hormones which may be associated with alcoholism.
- Low self-esteem or depression may
- Having friends who drink regularly
- The glamorous way that drinking alcohol is portrayed in advertising and in the media
ADVERSE EFFECTS OF ALCOHOLISM
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Warning signs of alcoholism
- the need to drink to produce relaxation
- drinking for the sedative effect of alcohol(drinking to forget)
- constantly thinking about alcohol
- gulping down each drink quickly
- aggressive or extravagant behaviour with a few drinks
- developing relationships MAINLY with others who drink
- beginning to lose interest in family in preference to alcohol
- staying away from work more often
- drinking even in the daytime
- lying and stealing to get alcohol
- blackouts (gaps in memory)
- tremors, specially of hands, when the person is unable to get a drink
- increasing problems in personal relationships
- alcohol related physical problems and mental disturbances
Alcoholism is treatable. In most cases, a short period of hospitalization is required (maybe upto 2 weeks) while the system adjusts to the absence of alcohol.
Medicines are needed to help the person overcome the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms that can occur from stopping alcohol. There are also many new forms of medication available, to help a person give up alcohol. Some of these can create a strong dislike for alcohol, so that the person no longer wishes to drink. However, these must always be used with a psychiatrist’s supervision, as they can be harmful if used improperly.
A good diet and vitamins are needed to make up for all the nutrients lost from drinking. Alcoholism can lead to many psychiatric disturbances besides blackouts – mental confusion, hallucinations, memory disturbances -these require to be treated.
Family therapy is necessary to help build up support for the person, as well to help the family members cope with the problem. Because alcoholism leads to problems in family relationships, these too may require working through with some outside help.
All these methods require long term therapy relapse prevention & rehabilitation as even one drink may lead to relapse.