Alcohol Addiction, or Alcoholism (Alcohol Use Disorder), has a slow and steady onset. It’s fundamentally different in this aspect from other drugs such as methamphetamine or heroin that tend to destroy the users life rather quickly.
No one ever starts out with the thought that alcohol may end up becoming a problem, however, alcohol is the most widely abused drug on the market. They think that they drink to calm down or loosen up in social situations and typically believe that they can stop anytime that they want. However, physiologically, alcohol is a drug that can lead to a dependent state because of how it works within the brain.
The effects of alcohol are immediate, as it quickly passes through the digestive tract and into the bloodstream. One serving of alcohol can decreases the electrical activity in the brain, leaving people feeling more relaxed. If people drink regularly, their brain cells will become used to that slower pace, and they might eventually become incapable of functioning properly at top speed.
Those who drink at this rate are at risk of developing dependence, which is a serious condition that occurs when the brain begins to rely on alcohol to function properly. In late stages of alcoholism, people may experience seizures, delirium tremens, and other serious medical emergencies if they go without drinking.
The National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics reported that alcohol abuse, alcoholism, and alcohol use disorder (AUD) kill over 3 million people each year, and that alcoholic liver disease is the leading cause of this death.
Alcoholism is characterized by the uncontrollable compulsion to drink despite negative consequences. It can be hard to admit that you have an problem with alcohol, especially since it can be just as hard for families to accept the fact that a loved one is suffering from alcoholism. However, alcoholism is a medical condition that affects the body, the spirit, and the brain. If left untreated, it can lead to various psychological and physical issues, and even death.
The first step towards treating alcoholism is detox. Similar to benzodiazepines, safely detoxing from alcohol must be done under medical supervision because if not the body can go into shock and can cause death.
With proper treatment, it is possible to recovery and live your life free from addiction. At GraceWay, we offer individualized recovery support to help your mind, body, and spirit heal from alcohol addiction.