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Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol Addiction

When someone says they have an alcohol or drug addiction, there are some things they should be aware of. It is important to know what kind of treatment works for each individual, how to identify symptoms, and whether seeking help is warranted.  There are several types of treatments that can work when you’re struggling with addictions. For example, through counseling and self-help groups, individuals learn about their habits and why they use substances in the way that they do. They also develop strategies to prevent substance use or reduce usage if it occurs.

In addition to traditional outpatient programs, certain treatments require more intensive involvement than others. These include medication-assisted therapies (MATs) such as Vistadine® Chantix®, which combine psychotherapy with medications like antidepressants or antihistamines to treat mental health conditions like depression or anxiety.

This article will talk about some potential signs that indicate it may be time to seek help for your own alcohol or drug addiction.

The effects of addiction

While not everyone who drinks becomes addicted to alcohol, there is a link between how much you drink and your body’s reaction to it. When you drink too much, your brain and body respond by producing chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin.  These feel good hormones make you happy and promote sleep. They also may decrease anxiety or depression and contribute to relaxation.  When you stop drinking, these hormones drop quickly. This can cause symptoms like trouble sleeping, irritability, and increased stress levels.

Research shows that repeated exposure to alcohol changes the way your brain works. For example, studies have shown that heavy drinkers experience less activity in parts of the brain related to emotion regulation.  Emotion regulation refers to processes such as learning how to control your emotions when things go wrong, using effective ways to reduce emotional responses, and being able to identify and use appropriate strategies to manage your moods.

Because of this, people who are alcoholic may be more likely to suffer from mental health conditions like anxiety or depressive disorders.

What causes addiction

There is some evidence that genetics play a role in alcohol use and abuse. Scientists have identified several genes that may influence how much of an alcoholic beverage you like, and even if you drink enough to be considered dependent on alcohol.  Studies show that people with certain genetic variations are more likely to develop alcohol dependence than individuals without these gene variants. It is also possible that different versions of these specific genes make it harder for your body to stop drinking by acting as a “food” source of fuel.

However, overall, studies find that individual differences in biology do not predict whether someone will become addicted to alcohol.  Instead, researchers believe that things such as early life experiences, social environment factors, and personal coping skills are what makes up most of the risk for developing alcoholism.  These types of behaviors can affect how our brains respond to drugs and alcohol. For example, research suggests that children who experience stress or loss may need to rely on emotional strategies such as seeking out supportive relationships to feel better.

Overall, we know that genetics contribute to vulnerability to alcohol problems, but they do not determine if and when this problem develops.

Genetics and addiction

Genetic factors play an important role in alcohol use, abuse, and dependence. Your genetics are not simple yes-or-no questions that make someone either alcoholic or non-alcoholic. Rather, your genetic makeup shapes how you perceive and respond to alcohol, as well as whether it is needed at all!

There are several areas of our genes that influence how we process and feel about alcohol. These include things like: how physically active you are, what foods you eat, how much stress you deal with, how sleep is regulated, and how easily you gain weight. All of these have been linked to alcohol use, abuse, and dependency.  When you add alcohol into the mix, things can get even more complicated. Because alcohol interacts with many parts of your body, different people may be genetically pre-disposed to being overactive, underactive, or just plain sensitive to alcohol.

These differences are why some people seem to drink a small amount of alcohol and become very drunk quickly, while other drinkers need larger amounts to feel the same effects.

Environmental factors and addiction

One of the major reasons why some people develop addictions is due to environmental influences. People who experience a lot of stress may turn to alcohol or other substances as a way to relax.  Another reason why someone might become addicted to alcohol or drugs is because they learned how to control their drinking habits in early adulthood.  When you are young, drinking can help you deal with difficult situations – it may even make you feel more confident. As you grow older, though, drinking too much can have negative effects.  It may interfere with work and personal relationships. It could also have long-term health consequences, such as problems with your heart or liver.

There are several strategies you can use to prevent substance abuse. If you or a loved one are struggling with an addiction, try talking about the problem and finding ways to cope.

Binge drinking

One of the most dangerous types of alcohol use is what’s been coined as binge drinking. This type of alcohol consumption happens quickly, typically within an hour or two.  You see it frequently in movies and TV shows where people drink heavily at a party or event. People may even refer to it as “the college way of partying.”  But this type of behavior can have disastrous consequences for you.

Drinking too much of anything — including alcohol — during a short period of time can put your health in danger. It can also be fatal for some individuals.  Fortunately, there are ways to help prevent alcohol-related injuries and death. And while they may feel uncomfortable at first, these strategies can be used effectively if needed.  So let’s take a look at some potential warning signs that might indicate risk of addiction to alcohol. If you notice any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor about how to handle them.

Warning Sign #1: You need more and more of the substance to get the same effect.  This could be because you’re drinking less of the product or the amount you consume is decreasing, but still not enough to achieve intoxication.  It could also be due to poisoning from ingesting excessive amounts of the drug.

Heavy drinking

One of the risk factors for alcohol addiction is heavy drinking. People who drink heavily are more likely to develop alcohol use disorders than people who do not drink at all or only moderate amounts of alcohol.  Studies show that those with alcohol use disorder symptoms spend, on average, around 2-3 hours per day actively drinking. It may be hard to believe, but most people actually get through their days without drinking very much liquid!

However, this doesn’t account for time spent prepping drinks, spending time talking about the effects of the next drink, going out to find more alcohol, and recovering from an earlier bout of intoxication. All these things add up to more time in which someone has a dependence on alcohol.

Heavy drinkers also seem to drink faster than individuals who have never been diagnosed with alcoholism. This can contribute to alcohol poisoning as well as signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorder.

What makes someone become addicted to alcohol?  There isn’t one simple cause of alcohol abuse. However, certain personality traits make it more probable that you will develop an alcohol use disorder.   Negative beliefs and expectations related to alcohol ica s Substance misuse often goes hand in hand with negative thoughts and feelings towards substance use. For example, when you think about giving up substances, you might feel guilty, ashamed, or disgusted with yourself.

Treatment for addiction

Finding help to stop drinking alcohol can seem like an impossible task at times, but there are treatments that have been proven to work.

Many of these treatments focus on changing how you feel about alcohol so that it is less important to you.

Treatments may also teach you skills to manage your emotions or learn relaxation techniques.

Some therapies require you to spend time with other people who want the same thing as you do – to stay sober.

Given this, groups such as self-help groups exist where you get trained in effective strategies for staying well. You can then take what you learned from the group and apply it to your own life.

Addiction is a complex disease that requires more than just medication or individual therapy. What works for one person’s not necessarily work for another, which is why we recommend a combination of both.

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Our mission is to help adult men and women by guiding you through our 12-step, 12-month recovery plan as you learn to live a sober life to the fullest.

Our comprehensive services are designed to help these men and women transition back into the community, while equipping them with adequate tools and coping skills to effectively transition them through our combined experience along with evidence-based best practices.  

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