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Alcoholism

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Alcoholism Essay, Research Paper

Alcoholism

Alcoholism, Alcohol is liquid distilled product of fermented fruits, grains and vegetables used as solvent, antiseptic and sedative for potential abuse. Possible effects are intoxication, sensory alteration, and anxiety reduction. Symptoms of overdose staggering, odor of alcohol on breath, loss of coordination, slurred speech, dilated pupils, fetal alcohol syndrome in babies, and nerve and liver damage. Withdrawal Syndrome is first sweating, tremors then altered perception, followed by psychosis, fear, and finally auditory hallucinations. Indications of possible miss-use are confusion, disorientation, and loss of motor nerve control, convulsions, shock, shallow respiration, involuntary defecation, drowsiness, respiratory depression and possible death. Alcohol is also known as Booze, Juice, Brew, Vino, and Sauce. Most people know why alcohol is abused some reasons are relaxation, sociability, and cheap high. Alcohol is a depressant that decreases the responses of the central nervous system. Alcoholism is a disease that has been destroying people?s lives mentally, physically and emotionally throughout the entire world since the early 18th century. Sometimes people get the idea that alcohol abuse and alcoholism are the same thing. The National Council on Alcoholism says “Alcohol Abuse? a problem to solve. Alcoholism a disease to conquer. Alcohol Abuse is the misuse of the substance, alcohol. You know you are abusing an alcoholic substance when you continue to use it, even though you’re having social or personal problems because of your use. You still use it even though it’s causing you physical problems. Using it the way you do is causing you legal problems. You don’t live up to major responsibilities on the job or in your family. Alcoholism is being addicted, or dependent on alcohol. You may be dependent on alcohol if any three of the following are true. You have to use larger and larger amounts of it to get drunk. You have withdrawal when you try to stop or cut down. You use it much more and for longer times than you really want to. You can’t seem to cut back and feel a strong need or craving for it. You spend a lot of your time just getting the substance. You’d rather use than work or be with friends and family. You keep using, no matter what. The National Council on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism estimates based on research, that a Blood Alcohol Concentration between .02 and .04 makes your chances of being in a single-vehicle fatal crash 1.4 times higher than for someone who has not had a drink. If your BAC is between .05 and .09, you are 11.1 times more likely to be in a fatal single vehicle crash, and 48 times more likely at a BAC between .10 and .14. If you’ve got a BAC of .15, your risk of being in a single-vehicle fatal crash is estimated to be 380 times higher than a non-drinker’s. Recent research is showing that true substance dependence may be caused, in part, by brain chemistry deficiencies. That is one reason that substance dependence is considered a disease. Excessive drinking can cause liver damage and psychotic behavior. As little as two beers or drinks can impair coordination and thinking. Alcohol is often used by substance abusers to enhance the effects of other drugs. Alcohol continues to be the most frequently abused substance among young adults. Alcohol abuse is a pattern of problem drinking that results in health consequences, social, problems, or both. However, alcoholism refers to a disease that is characterized by alcohol-seeking behavior that leads to the loss of control while drinking. Short-term effects of alcohol use include distorted vision, hearing, and coordination. Long-term effects of heavy alcohol use include: loss of appetite, vitamin deficiencies, stomach ailments, skin problems, sexual impotence, liver damage, heart and central nervous system damage. Using alcohol to escape problems, a change in personality, turning from Dr. Jekyl to Mr. Hyde, a high tolerance level blackouts, sometimes not remembering what happened while drinking, problems at work or in school as a result of drinking, concern shown by family and friends about drinking. As with other diseases, there is the possibility of taking medicine to get better. There is now promising evidence that taking medicine can correct some of the deficiencies that may cause drug dependence. It is beginning to look like a combination of the right medicine along with talking therapy and behavior therapy, will help us treat this disease, as we have never before been able to. One drug is Naltrexone, sometimes known as ReVia. Fluoxetine (Prozac) and Desipramine (Norpramin) have also shown promise. Alcohol abuse is also a serious medical and social problem, but is not the same as alcoholism. Alcohol abuse is the intentional overuse of alcohol. This includes occasional and celebratory over-drinking. Not all people who abuse alcohol become alcoholics, but alcohol abuse by itself can have serious medical effects. Overuse of alcohol is considered to be more than 3-4 drinks per occasion for women -more than 4-5 drinks per occasion for men. One drink equals one 12 ounce bottle of beer or winecooler, one 5 ounce glass of wine, or one and a half ounces of liquor. Alcohol is probably the oldest drug known and has been used since the early 1700?s societies. There are numerous types of alcohol; ethyl alcohol is the type consumed in drinking. In its pure form it is a clear substance with little odor. People drink alcohol in three main kinds of beverages, beers, which are made from grain through brewing and fermentation and contain from 3% to 8% alcohol; wines, which are fermented from fruits such as grapes and contain from 8% to 12% alcohol naturally, and up to 21% when fortified by adding alcohol; and distilled beverages, spirits such as whiskey, gin, and vodka, which on the average contain from 40% to 50% alcohol. Drinkers may become addicted to any of these beverages. The effects of alcohol on the body depend on the amount of alcohol in the blood, blood-alcohol concentration. This changes with the rate of consumption and with the rate at which the drinker’s physical system absorbs alcohol. The higher the alcohol content of the beverage consumed, the more alcohol will enter the bloodstream. The amount and type of food in the stomach can also affect the absorption rate. Drinking when the stomach is filled is less intoxicating than when it is empty. Foods in the stomach, which contain fat and protein, delay alcohol absorption. Body weight is also a factor, the heavier the person the slower the absorption of alcohol. After alcohol passes through the stomach, it is quickly absorbed through the walls of the intestines into the bloodstream and carried to various organ systems of the body. Although small amounts of alcohol are processed by the kidneys and secreted in the urine, and other small amounts are processed through the lungs and exhaled in the breath, most of the alcohol is metabolized by the liver. As the alcohol is metabolized, it gives off heat. It is possible to drink at the same rate as the alcohol is being oxidized out of the body. Most people, however, drink faster than this, and so the concentration of alcohol in the bloodstream keeps rising. Alcohol begins to impair the brain’s ability to function when the blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) reaches 0.05%, that is, 0.05 grams of alcohol per 100 cubic centimeters of blood. Most state traffic laws in the United States presume that a driver with a BAC of 0.10% is intoxicated. The person will experience a great deal of difficulty in attempting to walk and will want to lie down. When the blood-alcohol content reaches about 0.30%, which can be attained when a person rapidly drinks about a pint of whiskey, the drinker will have trouble comprehending and could become unconscious. At 0.35% to 0.50%, the brain centers that control breathing and heart action are affected, concentrations above 0.50% may cause death, although a person generally becomes unconscious before absorbing a lethal dosage. Moderate use of alcohol is not harmful, but heavy drinking is associated with alcoholism and many other health problems. The effects of excessive drinking on major organ systems of the human body become clear after heavy, continuous drinking or after intermittent drinking over a period of time that may range from 5 to 30 years. The parts of the body most affected by heavy drinking are the digestive and nervous systems. Digestive-system disorders that may be related to heavy drinking include cancer of the mouth, throat, and esophagus, gastritis, ulcers, cirrhosis of the liver, and inflammation of the pancreas. Disorders to the nervous system are neuritis, lapse of memory blackouts, hallucinations, and extreme tremor as found in delirium tremens. Delirium tremens may occur when a person stops drinking after a period of heavy, continuous imbibing. Permanent damage to the brain and central nervous system may also result Recent evidence shows that pregnant women who drink heavily may give birth to infants with the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, which could be face and body abnormalities and, in some cases, brain damage. Plus, the combination of alcohol and drugs, sleeping pills, tranquilizers, antibiotics, and aspirin, can be fatal, even when both are taken in nonlethal doses. If you have a drinking problem, or if you suspect you have a drinking problem, there are many other people like you, and there is help available. You could talk to school counselor, a friend, or a parent. Excessive alcohol consumption causes more than 100,000 deaths annually in the United States, and although the number shows little sign of declining, the rate per 100,000 population has decreased since the early 1980s. Accidents, mostly due to drunken driving, accounted for 24 percent of these deaths in 1992. Alcohol-related homicide and suicide accounted for 11 and 8 percent. Certain types of cancer that are partly attributable to alcohol, such as those of the esophagus, larynx, and oral cavity, contributed another 17 percent. About 9 percent due to alcohol-related stroke. Many studies have been made about attitudes toward drinking in different societies. Various surveys show that subgroups within a society or culture do not all have the same attitudes toward alcoholic beverages or the same drinking habits. Drinking behavior differs noticeably among groups of different age, sex, social class, racial status, ethnic background, occupational status, religious affiliation, and regional location.

ADAPCP 1 Alcohol and Drug Prevention and Control Program ADAPCP The Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program (ADAPCP) is a substance abuse treatment program used in the Armed Forces. The DA’s policy on alcohol is that “abuse or excessive use of alcohol will not be condoned or accepted as part of any military tradition, ceremony, or event.” This program is mandated by the public law 92-129, which is a law that mandated a program ADAPCP for the identification and treatment of drug and alcohol dependent person in the Armed Forces. The program is decentralized, and alcohol and other drug abuse and related activities are addressed in this single program. Any individual that is parts of the armed forces whether on active duty or retired, as well as, their prospective family members are available for this service. This program is necessary to protect Army and unit combat readiness and personnel’s health and welfare. There are seven functional areas of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program. They are as follows prevention, education, identification, rehabilitation, treatment, program evaluation, and research. There are nine objectives of ADAPCP. Reduce the abuse of alcohol and the availability and abuse of other drugs within the Armed Forces. Prevent alcohol and other drug abuse. Identify alcohol and other drug abusers as early as possible. ADAPCP 2, Restore both military and civilian employee alcohol and other drug abusers to effective duty. Provide for program evaluation and research. Ensure that effective alcohol and drug abuse prevention education is provided at all levels. Ensure that adequate resources and facilities are provided to successfully and effectively accomplish the ADAPCP mission. Ensure that all military and civilian personnel assigned to ADAPCP staffs are appropriately trained and experienced to effectively accomplish their mission. Achieve maximum productivity, reduced absenteeism and among DA civilian employees by preventing and controlling abuse of alcohol and other drugs. The rehabilitation program of the Alcohol Drug Abuse Prevention and Control program consists of two phases; the active phase and the follow-up phase. The active phase usually lasts for sixty days while the length of the follow-up phase usually lasts for three hundred days or ten months. The person responsible for the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program is the Commander. The Commander is also responsible for making sure that information on alcohol and other drug abuse and prevention aspects are provided to all members to include civilian employees and their dependents. There are four important items that the Commander must do to make the program beneficial to the clients, they are as follows ADAPCP 3. Ensure that the prevention program ADAPCP is aimed specifically at individual target groups. Ensure that the prevention program is coordinated with local civilian community efforts in drug and alcohol prevention. Encourage a high degree of involvement of military community members in local civilian community prevention efforts. Coordinate quality of life initiative with prevention activities by providing alternatives. The Commander must conduct a briefing or an evaluation of the soldier within seven days of his or her arrival into the program. The evaluation is a vital part of the assessment process in planning, decision making, and management of the client soldier. The Commander identifies the soldier as a possible drug or alcohol abuser by five objectives, they are as follows, self referral or self identification, command identification, biochemical identification, medical identification, and investigation and apprehension. Self-referral, self-identification is considered the most beneficial method due to the soldiers’ realization that he or she has a drug or alcohol problem and seeks assistance. Command identification is where the commander becomes aware of a soldier whose performance, conduct, interpersonal relations, physical fitness, or health appears to be affected by alcohol or drug abuse. Biochemical identification is where the soldier is demanded to take a urine test and is identified as a drug or alcohol user by the positive urine test. Medical identification is where a physician gathers ADAPCP 4 clinical information about the client and confirms that the soldier has a drug or alcohol addiction. After a soldier is clinically confirmed as an alcohol or other drug abuser he/she can be afforded treatment in the rehabilitation program for thirty days. Lastly, investigation and apprehension is where the soldier is referred to the CCC (Community Counseling Center), followed by enrollment into the ADAPCP for education and rehabilitation. When the Commander refers a soldier, he or she must participate in one or more of the three ADAPCP tracks. Track I involves awareness education and group counseling, as required. Enrollment will not exceed thirty days. Track II includes nonresidential rehabilitation, which is an intensive individual, or group counseling which may include awareness education. Enrollment is for a minimum of thirty days. Track III involves residential rehabilitation where there is medical treatment with nonresidential follow-up. Enrollment in this track is limited to those clients who have been evaluated by a physician as requiring residential treatment. Generally, residential care will be reserved for those individuals with long-standing problems of abuse, but for whom prognosis for recovery is favorable with proper treatment. Enrollment is for three hundred and sixty days. The Commander has four initiatives they must implement for the ADAPCP, they are Make and keep appointments with an Alcohol and Drug Coordinator. Identify personnel needing referral . ADAPCP 5 Monitoring of ADAPCP clients. Urinalysis testing. Counseling is not the only option in the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and control program. There is also drug abuse education and detoxification that are available. The drug abuse education program is conducted throughout the Army Training System. There are five objectives of this program, they are as follows. Inform all Army members of policy, operations and the extent of alcohol and drug abuse problems and programs. Inform all installation members about ADAPCP services to prevent and control alcohol and drug abusers. Provide commanders and supervisors with the information and skills they need to conduct affective alcohol and other drug abuse prevention, control, and rehabilitation activities within their unit. Inform military members of services available to individuals desiring to overcome their own problems with alcohol and other drug abuse. Provide military members of the community with the information that is needed to make responsible decisions about their personal use of alcohol and to avoid the misuse or abuse of other drugs. This program helps the clients soldiers gradually deal with their substance or alcohol abuse. Detoxification involves withdrawing an individual from drugs of abuse including alcohol, and treating the physical symptoms of that withdrawal, and initiating rehabilitation. However, there are consequences that arise when the client ADAPCP 6 continues to use, abuse, or misuse. This is called the exemption policy. Exemption as defined in the ADAPCP program, is an immunity from disciplinary action or from administrative separation with less than an honorable discharge as a result of a certain occurrence of alcohol abuse or drug misuse, or possession of drug incidental to personal use. The main objective of this policy is to effectively identify, treat, and rehabilitate the client by eliminating the barriers of successful communications between alcohol or other drug abusers on the one hand, and ADAPCP counselors or physicians supporting the program on the other hand. The exemption policy has five circumstances in which the policy does not apply, they are as follows. If the soldier is the subject of an alcohol or abuse investigation concerning that offense. If the soldier is apprehended for the offense. If the soldier has been officially warned that he/she is suspected of the offense. If the soldier has been charged under or offered Article 15 punishment for the offense. If the soldier receives emergency medical treatment for an actual or suspected overdose and such treatment resulted from apprehension by law enforcement officials. However, the program does not grant immunity under the exemption policy for present or future use or illegal possession of drug or for other illegal acts, past, present, or future.

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