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Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction is a serious problem in society today and this problem is not new. Higher primates such as chimpanzees will eat rotting fruit that has fermented in order to achieve a "high". Historians believe the first alcohol that was purposefully brewed was date palm wine originating in Mesopotamia. The texts created by the ancient Egyptians refer to social problems caused by public drunkenness. In the 1830's alcohol addiction in Great Britain was rampant, partly due to the rapid industrialization of that nation.

alcohol addiction
Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction, thus, has been a part of humanity since the first alcoholic beverage was brewed and continues to be a problem today.

Alcoholism has two main components: cravings (physical and psychological) and taking action to stop the cravings. When Alcoholics Anonymous states in the first of the 12-steps, "We admitted we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable," this can be interpreted as "We are powerless over the cravings for alcohol …" It is the powerful physical and psychological cravings that those with an alcohol addiction problem seek to stop through drinking. In addition, when a alcohol dependent person stops drinking and starts going through the painful withdrawal symptoms, this also encourages the person to drink in order to stop the pain of the withdrawal.

Where the alcoholic is not powerless, though, is over the action part of the equation. Even though the cravings are powerful and the withdrawal symptoms are painful, it is within the alcoholic's power to take no action to stop the cravings and withdrawal symptoms. In other words, it is within the alcohol dependent person's power to not take a drink. Many alcoholics do not believe that they have this power, though. They feel that they are powerless to refrain from taking action (drinking) since the cravings and withdrawal symptoms are simply too powerful.

In order for the addicted individual to abstain from drinking, they will need to make a conscious decision to tolerate the pain and discomfort for a period of time during detoxification and on a lesser scale thereafter. Detoxification can be helped by the administration of certain medicines from a licensed professional so that the detox does not turn out to be overwhelming and life threatening.

With the addition of therapy and support from others, the alcohol dependent person starts to realize that they do have some power and control over their addiction. They start to realize the difference between the cravings and withdrawal symptoms which they have no control over and the act of drinking to stop the symptoms which they do have control over. Being able to tolerate the cravings and withdrawal symptoms will give the alcoholic a new sense of power and self control that he or she may not have experienced in years.

Tolerance of symptoms is the most important task that those with an alcoholism will learn to face and manage. For many people inpatient alcohol abuse treatment program can help them break the vicious cycle of alcoholism. With the right alcohol abuse treatment, long-term recovery is possible.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

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