alcoholism or the Alcohol addiction is a recognized disease in which people are addicted to alcohol as an addictive substance.
The disease has one progressive course - This means that the thoughts of those affected turn more and more to get the next alcohol in order to satisfy their addiction and so they slide further and further into the dependence.
However, one must avoid acute alcohol abuse chronic alcoholism distinguish. The former can occur once or a few times, while chronic alcoholism usually lasts for a long time - often for years. With some people it lasts up to her End of life on.
It doesn't just play genetic factors a role but also socialthat can trigger alcohol addiction.
That means it comes too strongly on the environment whether or not alcohol addiction will develop. As already mentioned at the beginning, the environment in which people grow up or are still in adulthood is a great proof of whether they become alcoholic or not.
Children who grow up with one parent or both of them always or often being drunk are much more likely to do theirs own limits not to know as those who have learned to deal with alcohol normally.
Especially in difficult situations like that Loss of a close relative or the Loss of job can be the trigger for alcohol addiction. Those affected drink away their worries so as not to be constantly reminded of them.
Also makes Loose alcohol and self confident, this is certainly a factor that is especially important for insecure and shy people. It should be mentioned at this point that there are also children Alcoholic families there are who do not make the behavior of their parents a role model, but exactly that opposite direction hit. As in many other areas, this simply depends on the individual and nothing can be generalized. Another important point is the fabric Dopaminewhich in our brain and is just as closely related to the subject of addiction. Mediates dopamine Satisfaction and desire.
It has been found that there are huge differences when Dopamine levels between alcoholic people and those who are not addicted.
It is said that with addicts, even the mirror twice as high should be. The problem with Dopamine consists in the fact that we naturally always want to satisfy our needs and, through excessive alcohol consumption, the dopamine receptors become very insensitive and demand more and more. So, too, those people drink more and more for satisfaction.
Finally, there is also the fact that there are serious differences in how much alcohol an individual can tolerate. There are not only differences between men and women, but also glaring differences between the individual continents. So you can say that Asians can drink significantly less on average, while Europeans can sometimes consume very high amounts of alcohol. Women also generally tolerate significantly less alcohol, as their body fights against it much earlier.
Is Alcohol Dependence Hereditary?
Scientists have found that Alcohol addiction or generally addictive behavior is actually inheritable to a certain extent.
It is said that there is a gene that is particularly related to alcoholism. this is that CRHR1 gene. There is a mutation of this gene in some people in the population, which means that alcohol is not consumed more often, but the amount is much higher when people use alcohol. This means that, for example, one person drinks 1 bottle of beer and the other drinks 2 or 3 bottles of beer at the same time.
Most of all, the gene is related to stress and coping with stress. People who have the mutation need more alcohol or alcohol in general to cope better with stress.
The most important symptom is undoubtedly the one that all of life revolves around alcohol. Be through this symptom many other areas Badly neglected in life. Especially social contacts can be cared for less and less.
There can be numerous organic damage noticeable, which often only appear after years. These are above all Liver damage, but also the pancreas is often affected. Many also come Cancers and it can too Cardiovascular disease come.
If people drink too much alcohol over a very long period of their lives, mental damage often occurs. External characteristics that suggest alcohol abuse are, for example Weight losswhich occurs in many alcohol addicts. In addition, there is one that is getting worse and worse skin and Tremble such as excessive sweating. Likewise, many of those affected complain Gastrointestinal complaints.
These people often fall into disrepair, because with increasing consumption they are often no longer able to adequate personal hygiene to pay attention.
in the social area Alcoholic people lose more and more connection to friends and family and hardly have any hobbies or contacts. There is always more direction isolation. Also there are often Separations from the partner and the Loss of job. These are factors that are sure to intensify the disease again.
It is also noticeable that alcohol addicts usually tolerate significantly more than everyone else. They also tend to fail to recognize their problem and to trivialize the situation. In addition to all of these symptoms, there are those mental symptoms add how depressions or personality disorders, etc. The disease is characterized by emotional suffering.
You don't always recognize an alcoholic person immediately.
Some people, especially Women, can hide their illness very well. Nevertheless, with many people you can smell the familiar one "Banner" so the characteristic halitosis of alcohol.
In addition, the skin usually progressively worse and people often lose quite a bit of weight. You may not really notice the organic damage until later or never at all. Also, they are often very restless and sweat easily. They also change socially and behaviorally. Alcoholics often withdraw more and more and lose contact with their social environment. Life revolves around alcohol. You can always find something alcoholic to drink around them. If you try to express your concerns, they will respond sensitive and play down the situation. Besides, with many it is Stimulus threshold often very low.
One finds in Internet numerous tests that you can do to find out for yourself whether you are addicted to alcohol.
A wide variety of questions about the environment, dealing with alcohol and personal questions are asked. These tests are voluntary, free and anonymous. Of course there are those too Advice centers, in the hospital or at Support groups. In this way you can first make it clear for yourself whether you are dependent or not.
This can be the first and a very important step towards therapy.
There is a great deal of help available for people who are addicted to alcohol.
For many it is familiar people with whom one speaks or who speaks to one and for another it is easy to become one support group to go where there are other people with the same problems. There are in every city free advice centersto which one can also by phone can turn.
In addition, of course Family doctors, Psychotherapists and Clinicswho also offer help. You can find all offers very easily via the Internet or the telephone book
If your own will is strong enough and those affected are well supported by friends and family members, it is very possible to become a dry alcoholic.
That means that you don't drink anything at all. This is also the ultimate goal of therapy. Unfortunately, only one sip of alcohol is often enough and those affected will succumb to alcohol again, so if you have ever been alcoholic, you should not or should not drink alcohol later.
There are various offers of help, ranging from inpatient care and resident doctors to self-help groups. Depending on how well the individual gets along, what fits best is then selected.
Normally, however, all institutions work closely together. In addition to all professional facilities, there should be at least one, in the best case several close relatives who support the alcoholic and are there for him, because especially in difficult situations in life, there is a risk that the dry alcoholic will drink again starts very high.
Before starting therapy at all, it is important that the problem is recognized at all and that it is accepted as such. Therapy will mainly be successful if the person concerned actually wants to get well. This knowledge and a good education of the patient himself and the close relatives, through appropriate facilities, with which one must first get in contact, is very important and represents the first of the four phases of the therapy.
Then comes the withdrawal phase. It is important to distinguish how strong the will and how intact and helpful the person's environment is and what the patient's condition is in order to decide whether to carry out inpatient or outpatient withdrawal therapy. Especially when the psyche and the body have already been badly affected, inpatient withdrawal therapy is indispensable, especially in order to have professional help on hand in the event of any complications. Withdrawal itself is undoubtedly a difficult phase for those affected. Many suffer from typical withdrawal symptoms such as shakiness, sweating, insomnia, palpitations, gastrointestinal complaints, confusion, etc.
The withdrawal symptoms can affect both body and soul. How long the withdrawal symptoms last is difficult to say and depends not only on the individual but also on the severity of the illness.
It can even lead to very dangerous side effects such as so-called delirium. Delirium can lead to confusion, motor disorders, but also cardiovascular complications and hallucinations, as well as vegetative derailments. Such patients must be looked after and cared for in intensive medicine and should definitely be in inpatient therapy, as the body is acutely at risk.
Please also read: Korsakoff syndrome
Appropriate medication is also given for so-called detoxification. How long this phase lasts depends on the patient, but it is said that it is completed after about 9 to 12 days. In the weaning phase, the patient is free from alcoholic substances and toxins and has to learn again what a life without alcohol looks like and how to deny it. In addition to occupational therapy, there is also psychological support. This phase can last for several months.
The last phase, the rehabilitation phase, is about getting the patient back into their normal environment and learning to deal with daily problems and worries. These are no longer obscured by the alcohol, but are often even more evident. It is precisely here that it is important that the patients have good support.
It is very difficult to make a prognosis as this applies to every single person arrives.
In addition, as mentioned, the environment and support after therapy are of great importance. He follows no therapySo here, too, the prognoses cannot be given in advance, but the body will deteriorate more and more and the mental damage will increase. Sooner or later, an alcoholic person may suffer from the consequences of how Organ damage but also Suicide die
Alcoholism in old age
Alcoholism in old age is a topic about that rarely spoken and which is not particularly present.
But it is not always that dementia or one Insecurity and weaknessthat makes old people look confused and fall. Unfortunately, significantly more old people drink far too much alcohol than you think.
However, since they no longer work, many no longer drive, and so on, it is much easier for them to hide their addiction. Especially the lonliness and the Loss of partner makes many old people resort to alcohol. In addition, they are often very many Medication take, which also make the body tolerate less alcohol.
Also the liver no longer works as effectively. Of the Alcohol breakdown is somewhat reduced and since there is less body water, the alcohol can be diluted less and will have a stronger effect. Unfortunately, there are currently no institutions and specialists who take care of this group of people who would need significantly different care and forms of therapy than younger people.