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Alcohol the Legal Drug

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FC: Alcohol as a Social Problem | Assesment of Alcohol use Bigstock.Alcohol Photo : drugrehabhelp.net Date: Unknown | Created by: Sunanda Rajegowda and Lisa Sandlin

1: Alcohol is the most abused drug in the United States.Although consumption of alcohol by itself is not a social problem, the continuous and excessive use of alcohol can become problematic. What is Alcohol? Alcohol is a colorless, burning taste, highly inflammable liquid with a boiling point of 78.3 degree Celsius. Alcohol is usually obtained by the fermentation of sugars, which are cleaved by yeast into alcohol and carbon dioxide. | Alcohol Bottles Photo: alcoholism-treatment101.com Date: Unknown

2: As a society we tend to categorize the severity of addiction in a way that drugs are the most dangerous and alcohol is only a problem. Because alcohol addiction can be a slow progressive disease many people don't see it in the same light as drug addiction. An addiction to drugs is seen as being a more deadly and dangerous issue than that of alcohol because a drug addiction can happen more quickly. However, alcohol is something that is easy to obtain, something that is found at almost every restaurant, grocery store or convenience store. People with an alcohol addiction cannot hide from alcohol as easy as a drug addict. Approximately 14 million Americans suffer from alcohol abuse and half that are alcoholics. When drinking becomes a routine people can become dependent on alcohol. Alcoholism is the most severe form of alcohol abuse. Whereas alcohol abuse is defined as the destructive use of alcohol, alcoholism is the destructive addiction to alcohol (http://www.healthcommunities.com)

3: Alcoholism is defined by the repeated, obsessive, and uncontrollable use of alcohol despite extremely negative consequences. Alcohol addiction has enormous and somewhat fatal consequences on humans it has a direct impact on the individual, family, friends and the society. | Complications and health issues in treating Alcoholism, Photo: healthexco.com Date: Unknown

4: Understanding the impact of alcohol on human health and well being. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Photo: pubs.niaaa.nih.gov Date: Unknown

5: Alcoholism has long been accepted as a debilitating disease to which some people are more disposed to than others. Elvin M.Jellinek, of the Yale center of alcohol studies, first popularized the disease concept of alcoholism in 1960. He stated that alcoholism is a progressive and life-threatening disease (http://alcoholstudies.rutgers.edu). He also stated that individuals who suffered from this disease could never drink in moderation, and that complete abstinence from alcohol was the only healthy choice for alcoholics. Since then physicians, psychiatrists, politicians and others have agreed alcoholism is a disease.

6: One of the negative aspects of alcohol abuse is the impact it has on the body, which harm the drinker and others around them. After alcohol is ingested, it reaches the stomach where about 20% of the alcohol absorbs into the blood stream, through small blood vessels. The remaining 80% of the alcohol continues to the small intestine and is absorbed there into the bloodstream (http://www.cdc.gov). The organs that are used for the absorption and digestion of alcohol, like the stomach, the liver and the pancreas are vulnerable. The brain also suffers from continuous abuse and is the first part of the body affected. It only takes a few drinks alcohol to have an affect a person's memory (nih.gov);the more someone drinks the more his/her memory is affected. | Photo: www.umm.edu Date: Unknown

7: The brains reaction time is slowed dramatically which is why drinking and driving is illegal. The affects of drinking and driving are one of the most deadly affects of consuming alcohol. | There are about 17,000alcohol related car accident deaths in the united states each year; this means that there is a dunk driving death every 31 minutes. | According to a study done by mothers driving against drunk driving about 248,000 people are injured in accidents where police reported that alcohol was present,thus one person is injures in a drunk driving accident in the US every 2 minutes. | When choosing to consume alcohol one should take into consideration the abuse on the body or the harm it may cause others. | Underage-drinking-driving.jpg Photo: narconon-news.org Date: Unknown

8: Another negative aspect of alcohol is the breakdown of the family structure.The effects of alcoholism on families can cause more damage and pain than any other internal or external influence on the family unit. The impact of the drinker's abuse or addiction is different with each member of the family and has long-term implications. The National institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reports that more than one-half of adults in the U.S. have a close family member who has abused alcohol or is addicted to the drug. | One of the problems to the family is fetal alcohol syndrome, this occurs when a mother consumes alcohol during her pregnancy. Drinking while pregnant cause babies to be born with irreversible physical or mental birth defects or some children are born premature and addicted to alcohol. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, severe damage from FAS affects around 5000 babies every year; additionally 35000 babies are born with milder damage from FAS (www.marchojdimes.com)

9: Another problem with in the family structure is mental/emotional damage drinking has on some children. Many children born to alcoholics believe it is their fault there mother or father drink and this high anxiety and stress. These feelings then affect the way the child is in school causing behavior problems and making it hard for children to make friends. The children of alcoholic parents grow up and in their early adulthood they have problems trusting people and they make poor choices. Another problem for an alcoholic is the impact it has on a marriage or partnership. It can cause serious significant mental trauma and physical health problems. Divorce rates among couples where one or both partner's drinks are much higher than average (nih.gov). Some spouses of alcoholics feel as though they need to take care of the person and this leads to resentment, anger, and exhaustion inevitably causing divorce. | Teenagerbingedrinking.jpg Teenage alcoholism: A big problem for the big state of texas. Photo: teenagealcoholism.net Date: Unknown

10: Sociological perspective s that relates to the Alcohol abuse are: Functionalist perspective, Conflict perspective, and Feminist perspective. | 1. Functionalists argue that society provides us with norms or guidelines on alcohol use. Social norms identify the appropriate uses of drugs and alcohol. Alcohol consumption with meals or in celebration may be appropriate for adults but not for young children. | Alcoholism Demotivator4.jpg Photo: verticalandwastingoxygen.blogspot. com Date: Unknown

11: 2. Conflict approach focus on the power of major alcohol selling corporations: 1. Their control through the media, sports, clubs affiliations etc..of the ideology that drinking alcohol is an essential part of bing popular when they are young adult. 2. Their creation of alcohol commodities ( like alcohol pops drinks ) that are specifically to young people, especially teenage girls. | 3. Feminist perspective states, Women face unique social stigmatization as a result of their alcohol use and may also experience discrimination as they attempt to receive treatment.There is increasing recognition of the importance of gender-specific and gender-sensitive treatment models, including the development of separate women's treatment programs. Gail Unterberger offers a feminist revision of the traditional 12- step statement used by Alcoholic Anonymous. | Teenage drinking has long boon thought of as a rite of passage. Photo: roserehab.com Date: Unknown

12: Alcohol Awareness building and policy changes that are educating youth and elders about the adverse effects of early age drinking. | Photos: narconon-news.org Date: Unknown Alcohol education and prevention alcohol-prevention.jpg

13: What can be done to help those that may be addicted to alcohol? There are two well-known groups Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Al-Anan and Al-ateen which helps family members dealing with alcoholism. These groups provide support and give families the tools they need to cope with the trauma alcohol have caused. Al-Anan/Al-ateen is made up of individuals that can share similar stories with new members and give them ideas on the road that lies ahead for their family. AA is made up of addicts in recovery helping new members find strength through a higher power. These groups are heavily criticized but have helped millions of people whose lives have been negatively impacted by alcohol. If a person does not want to use one of these groups there are several rehabilitation locations, a rehab can help the person go through detox and find the root cause of addiction to alcohol. A support group pr rehab is steps in the right direction of healing the drinker and the people that drinking have hurt.

14: Treating Alcoholic addiction: 1. Find a treatment center by contacting physician, therapist or th substance abuse and mental health services administration,which offers a comprehensive list of certified alcohol treatment centers. Use the facility locator to find a treatment center near you. 2. Begin the sobriety process by entering a detoxification program. Body becomes physically dependent on alcohol,once you stop drinking, withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, tremors, sweating and anxiety occur. These effects can be very painful. Physician may design a detox plan that includes oral medications such as naltrexone, disulfiram and acamprosate-- FDA-approved drugs to help reduce the withdrawal symptoms. 3. Enroll in a 12 step program such as a Alcoholics Anonymous. These free programs are designed to offer you group support and to teach you coping skills to help reduce your chances of relapse. Tips and warnings: 1. Practice taking care of your basic needs by eating right and getting at least 7 to 8 hours to sleep every night. 2. Learn to identify trigger factors and apply coping skills to reduce the temptation to drink when these situations arise.

15: Alcohol may be legal to consume but the lasting effects are not positive. Some individuals may be able to consume alcohol in moderation to celebrate during the holidays, joyous occasions, such as weddings or when a loved one has passed away toast to a life. However, for many people alcohol is a source of misery and pain. For these individuals, alcohol is not a symbol of merriment, but rather a vice and an obsession that consumes them. This obsession has been prove to be dangerous and have lasting negative effects on the person choosing to drink and the people surrounding the person drinking.

16: Works Cited: 1.http://www.healthcommunities.com/alcohol-abuse/diagnosis.shtml 2.http://alcoholstudies.rutgers.edu/about/history.html 3.http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol 4.www.nih.gov 5.www.marchofdimes.com 6.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10487734

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