Alcoholism: Substance Abuse
HCA / 250
May 25, 2014
“Alcoholism and alcohol abuse are among the most common, devastating, and costly problems in the United States” (Caron 2013). Alcoholism is something that can be hidden or easy to spot. Alcohol can affect your psychology health and physical health. Some people are not even aware that they are either boarder line alcoholics or have become one fully. There are ways to identify the signs, know the risk factors, acknowledge the sociocultural factors, treatment options, and what necessary lifestyle changes need to be made to stop and prevent this illness.
There are many risk factors that play a role when deciding is someone is or is becoming an alcoholic. One night of drinking and partying can change a person’s life forever. Once you have the substance into your system, you might continue to crave it, which will start leading you to become an alcoholic. Other risk factors or characteristics that are may play a role in whether someone will become an alcoholic are age, family history, depression and/or mental health, social and cultural factors, and even mixing medications with alcohol. Although drinking at any age could start someone to become an alcoholic, but it is more common for people in their early ages to most likely to be more of a higher risk. It is proven that if there is alcoholism in one’s family history, for example, mother, father or even grandparent that the future generations are at risk to becoming an alcoholic. Someone who is depressed or that has a mental disorder, such as bipolar, can be at risk. If a person is constantly hanging around certain social groups that are always drinking, it may lead to becoming an alcoholic. It goes back to the old saying, “you are who you hang around.” It goes for also coming from a certain cultural that is known for their drinking habits, such as Indians and Germans. Along with any risk factor there are ways that someone can prevent or can control. If you are drinking because you are hanging around certain people who only party and drink, then you can take control and stop socializing with those types of people. Find a group of friends that do not need any substance to have a great time.
Alcoholism does not just target one gender over the other, but men are more likely to become an alcoholic over women. “Men, in general, are more likely to become alcoholics than women, although women tend to experience more physical problems, such as liver disease, from their alcoholism” (Curiosity 2011). Men have more a chance to take risk whether they are drunk or not. Most men can out drink women because they have more of a tolerance for alcohol then women. It takes less drinks for women to become tipsy or even drunk compared to men. Alcoholism can effect everything in your life from your personal life to professional life. Whether you are a man or woman alcoholism can completely disrupt your life in some ways no one could ever imagine. For example, a person who is drinking at any cost, can lose everything have in just a blink of an eye, such as their job and/or family and friends. Alcohol is just like any other drug, it is addicting and can take over one’s life.
Just like any drug there are treatment options to overcome this substance, but the first step is to admit that you have a problem. No treatment will ever work unless the person wants the help. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are many options to help anyone with alcoholism, it just depends on how severe the illness is. They consist of detoxification and withdrawal (generally takes two to seven days, which might require medications), learning skills and establishing a treatment plan (includes goal setting, behavior change techniques, and even counseling), psychological counseling (group or individual therapy), oral medications (Anatbuse, Revia, and Campral, which are drugs that can remove the compulsion to...
References: American Heart Association (2014). “Alcohol and Heart Disease” Retrieved from website:
Caron (2013). “Alcohol Stats”. Retrieved from website:
Curiosity (2011). “Who is at risk to become an alcoholic?” Retrieved from website:
MayoClinic (2014). “Alcoholism” Retrieved from website:
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