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all about alcoholism and the damaging affects it has on relationships and families. Inspired by "The Glass Castle" by Jeannette Walls.

Jess Herfst

on 14 June 2011

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Transcript of Alcoholism

Alcoholism a chronic disorder characterized by dependence on alcohol, repeated excessive use of alcoholic beverages, the development of withdrawal symptoms on reducing or ceasing intake, morbidity that may include cirrhosis of the liver, and decreased ability to function socially and vocationally. Alcoholism is defined as.... They are similar in that addiction is a physiological "craving" for something and psychological dependence is a "need" for a particular substance because it causes enjoyable mental affects. refers to a state resulting from chronic use of a drug that has produced tolerance and where negative physical symptoms of withdrawal result from abrupt discontinuation or dosage reduction. Psychological Dependence Physical Dependence There are two different forms of addiction... & Alcohol Alcoholism Treating Alcoholism Alcoholism's Effect on Families a volatile, flammable, colorless liquid. We know it as the alcohol found in alcoholic beverages however, it is also used in thermometers and as a fuel. Ethanol is defined as... Alcohol is a.. DEPRESSANT General effects on the Central Nervous System Include Slows down heart rate so let's start by talking about... Slows down breathing Decreases blood pressure Decreases inhibitons Slows reflexes In extreme cases, person could stop breathing or heart could stop beating. Decreases anxiety Increases relaxation Long-Term Affects of Alcohol Short-Term Affects of Alcohol The effects of alcohol are dependent on a variety of factors, including a person’s size, weight, age, and sex, as well as the amount of food and alcohol consumed. Dizziness Talkativeness Slurred Speech Disturbed Sleep Nausea & Vomiting Impaired Judgement Impaired Coordination Increase in aggressive behaviour some common short-term affects include.. there are many different types of alcohols
but we will be focusing on ethanol, or drinking alcohol so what is.. ? Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome so we just heard that "negative physical symptoms of withdrawal result from abrupt discontinuation or dosage reduction." But what does that mean? "Alcohol withdrawal is a distressing but temporary condition lasting from two days to a week" usually begins a few hours after the patient stops drinking [...]. Eyelids flutter, tongue quivers, hands shake. (Goodwin, 43) hallucinating shaking convulsions delirium tremens Occasionally alcoholics have convulsions that resemble seizures of the epileptic. These seizures usually occur one to three days after the person stops drinking. After a day or two without drinking the alcoholic may start hallucinating-seeing and hearing things that others do not see or hear. The most severe form of withdrawal is delirium tremens. It often means that the person has not only withdrawal symptoms but also a serious medical illness. Psychological Problems (Goodwin, 43-44) Social Problems The Four Stages Preoccupation with Alcohol Self-Deception Guilt Anxiety & Depression Alcoholism isn't all physical. There are lots of psychological problems associated with alcholism including: (Straight Facts About Drugs and Drug Abuse) The alcoholic is constantly thinking about alcohol. Where they'll get it, When they'll get it, What their getting etc. "It is obsessional" (Goodwin, 35). "Deep down, the alcoholic believes he is doing it to himself; he is the perpetrator, not the victim. And this he cannot accept so he lies to himself" (Goodwin, 35). "But he does know and can't help knowing. There are too many reminders. The wife's pleas and tantrums. The boss' 'friendly' advice. The dented bumper. The night terrors and night sweats. The trembling hands. All spell self-destruction, and even the cleverest self-deciever knows it" (Goodwin, 36). other symptoms of alcohol withdrawal symptom include: sleep problems & lack of appetite Alcoholics experience depression and anxiety both while drinking and during a hangover. Alcoholics experience what Goodwin describes as a "rollercoaster effect". It is a vicious cycle where alcoholics start by feeling bad about something in their life. They begin to drink to feel better but then as the euphoria begins to wears off they begin to drink again in order to feel better (Goodwin, 38). When drinking often alcholics have memory lapses. During these blackouts people often act much or concscious and alert. After sobering up alcoholics try to remember what happened during the blackouts to make sure they didn't do anything wrong (Goodwin, 35). Amnesia Divorce Crime Death Work Inefficiency Psychiatric Admissions (Drug Guide) C H OH 2 5 Treating alcoholism is a [very] involved process because alcoholics need to break their dependence on alcohol and deal with a large array of problems caused by their drinking. Alcoholism can be successfully treated and managed but not cured. Abstinence is usually the goal since most alcoholics are not able to control their drinking through just cutting down.
(ehealthyMD) Support Groups Medication Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Treating Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome medications are often used together with treatment to ensure the best possible results. but what do these drugs do? ~ cause unpleasant symptoms when a person drinks alcohol while using the drug ~reduces the pleasureable affects of alcohol cravings more common medications like anti-depressants and anti-axiety drugs can be perscribed to prevent relapse. we've all heard about support groups for alcoholics. some popular groups include: SOS (secular organizations for sobriety) AA (alcoholics anonymous) WFS (women for sobriety) not only do these groups allow alcoholics to talk about their experiences with people experiencing similar troubles. they can also makes friends that are trying to avoid alcohol which allows them to increase involvement in activities not related to alcohol use. it is also believed that support groups increase alcoholics commitment to recovery a theraphy aimed to... >> change unproductive thought patterns & change how you feel >>change & gain control over unwanted behaviours for alcoholics cognitive-behavioral therapy is used to: >>change the way they think about and use alcohol >>identify and avoid things that trigger their drinking >>develop strategies to cope with cravings for alcohol >>make changes in lifestyle that increase involvement in activites not related to alcohol use and reduce contact with drinkers coping with the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal syndrome is the only the beginning to quitting drinking. we already touched on the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal symptoms which include: trembling, sleep problems, hallucinations, seizures, delirium tremens and many more. ~Alcoholics generally do not seek help when dealing with Mild Symptoms ~When dealing with Moderate Symptoms doctors can often perscribe medication. ~When Severe Symptoms occur alcoholics can be hospitalized or put in an alcohol treatment center, where their symptoms are cared for by doctors with medications and other therapies. "alcoholics are about two times more likely to be divorced than non-alcoholics"
(Goodwin, 47) why is death classified in social problems? because aside from medical reasons for death alcoholics have a higher death rate as a result of accidents and suicides. high rates of psychiartric admissions are alcoholics or have alcohol-related problems workplaces are suffering from poor attendance on monday mornings and friday nights as a result of alcoholism Before drugs became a large problem crimes were mainly commited by alcoholics. Most people in jail were also heavy drinkers at this time. Stage One: Stage Two: Stage Three: Stage Four: "First the man takes a drink, and then the drink takes a drink, and finally the drink takes the man."
-Old Chinese Proverb The drinker has their first drinking experience. They learn the short-term effects of alcohol (which feel good). Eventually when the drinker sobers up there isn't any huge problems with alcoholism yet but the drinker has learned 3 things: - alcohol is a way to feel better - how much better depends on the amount drunk - alcohol works every time The drinker now wants to drink but finds socially exceptable ways to. "Stage two drinkers make up rules for drinking [...] and stick by their rules" (Silverstein, 47) However this is still a safe experience. 3 symptoms appear which destroy the alcoholics memory - Blackouts - Repression - Euphoric Recall "By stage three, drinkers have crossed the boundary from social drinker to alcoholic [...]. The person's whole day revolves around drinking, and he or she will go to any lengths to change his or her lifestyle to drink" (Silverstein, 50). things that occur during this stage include: - "rules" of stage two are broken - family usually realizes that he or she had a drinking problem - become totally dependant on alcohol: can't get through a day without it - subconciously rationalize why they drink - personalize changes "Families of alcoholics need treatment just as much as alcoholics" (Silverstein, 67). "Alcohol affects each member of the family – from the unborn child to the alcoholic’s spouse" (Heffner, 1) Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
(FAS) Children of Alcoholics
(COA) Adult Children of Alcoholics
(ACOA) Spouses of an Alcoholic all about... and the damaging effects it has on a family In general, the more severe the mother’s drinking problem during pregnancy, the more severe the symptoms of FAS in infants babies born with FAS... ~ are shorter ~ are underweight ~ have deformities of the brain & skull ~ have small eye openings ~ have thin upper lips ~ flat faces ~ a long groove in the middle of their upper lips ~ damaged central nervous systems ~ have difficulties learning ~ difficulties with attention span ~ difficulties with judgment ~ problems with memory ~ difficulty with problem solving ~ frequent behaviour problems ~ problems with social skills ~ anger management problems ~ hyperactive ~ impulsive ~ poorly coordinated ~ impaired speech ~ impaired hearing ~ mental retardation spouses of alcoholics may have feelings of: >> Hatred >> Self-Pity >> Avoidance of Social Contacts >> Suffer from exhaustion >> May become physically or mentally ill (Berger, 1) The non-alcoholic parent has to take on the role of the alcoholic and their own. As one parent attempts to maintain the roles of both children often become neglected and the parent becomes demanding of the children. Financial issues occur in families with alcoholics aswell. Families are forced to give up certain aspects of their budget in order to afford the costly alcohol. (Heffner, 1) Support Groups The good news is just like alcoholic support group there are also support groups for families of an alcoholic. These support groups have the same basic function as the support groups with talked about earlier just with a different "topic". Some well known support groups for families of alcoholics include: Al-Anon Alateen "Adult children of alcoholics (ACOAs) often don’t relate their problems to having grown up in a family with an alcoholic parent" (Heffner, 1). Adult Children of Alcoholics often have problems with: >> depression >> agression >> impulsive behaviour >> drug abuse >> difficulty establishing healthy relationships with others >> being a parent themselves (often failing) >> making career choices (make poor ones) >> negative self-image (Berger, 67) ACOA's also: >> have feelings of worthlessness >> have feelings of failure >> have problems with family responsibility >> have problems with intimacy (no trust) >> fear of falling in love with someone who will hurt them >> often become involved with someone who is an alcoholic >> more likely to develop alcoholism >> psychological or mental disorders >> see doctors more often >> daughters tend to have more reproductive problems & see doctors for this more often >> daughters have higher rates of eating disorders some effects on children include: ~ low self-esteem ~ feelings of lonliness ~ feelings of guilt ~ feelings of helplessness ~ fear of abandoment ~ chronic depression ~ feels repsonsibility for the problems of alcoholics ~ believe they created the problem ~ experience high levels of tension & stress ~frequent nightmares ~ bedwetting ~ crying ~ fear of going to school/lack of friends ~ obsessive perfectionism ~ hoarding ~ staying by themselves ~ poor self-image ~ being excessively self-concious ~ developing phobias ~ problems in school ~ difficulty establishing relationships with teachers and classmates ~ repeat another year in school/dropout ~ don't complete high school ~ lying ~ stealing ~ fighting ~ truancy
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