Alcohol Dependency – Definition
Alcohol dependency simply means that your body and mind have become used to having alcohol in your system. As a result, you crave more alcohol in order to function, and you are liable to need to drink even though you may want to stop. If you don’t get a drink, then you are at serious risk of going into alcohol withdrawal.
Anybody who drinks regularly is at risk of becoming dependent on alcohol. For example, in terms of jobs, the level of alcohol-related death is twice the national average among bar-staff and publicans, whereas that risk is lowest among farmers and professional drivers.
Some of the symptoms of alcohol dependence include:
- Tremors the morning after you’ve drank
- Alcohol-induced illnesses
- Memory lapses due to blackouts while drinking
- Withdrawal symptoms set in if you stop drinking for too long
- Tolerance to alcohol that requires you to drink more than you used to
- Failing to meet obligations because of your alcohol use
- Inability to control how much you drink or stop after you’ve started
- Finding excuses to drink
Cause and effect
Ever wonder what makes alcohol so addictive? Alcoholism has no one single cause. Rather, it is a detailed combination of genetic markers and environmental precursors all mixed together. There is definitely a hereditary role in the development of alcohol dependency, but no alcohol addiction gene has ever been isolated. Likewise, environmental factors are part of the mix, too. Growing up in a household where alcohol is prevalent also ups the risk of alcoholism in your future.
Your upbringing contributes via involvement with peers as well, and the age at which you begin drinking. According to reports individuals who first use alcohol before the age of 15 are five times more likely to suffer from alcohol abuse or alcohol dependency than those who first used alcohol beginning at the age of 21 or older. In addition, parents who downplay the use of alcohol are likely contributing to the rates of alcoholism quite a bit.
Now, obviously, alcoholism and alcohol dependency walk together. Because of the dysfunctional way that alcoholics end up drinking they are very likely to become dependent on alcohol. However, they are not the same thing. An alcoholic may be treated for alcohol dependency, get through alcohol withdrawal safely, and feel ‘a million dollars’ as a result. However, the alcoholic is still an alcoholic and has not been cured. Even a single drink is liable to take the alcoholic crashing back to alcohol dependence as a result of relapse. Thankfully relapse prevention is one of the main areas covered in private rehab clinics.
Rehab Guide is a leading alcohol rehab providers – contact us today to arrange your FREE addiction assessment.