Alcoholism/ addiction is a progressive neurological disease strongly influenced by genetic vulnerability. Inherited or acquired abnormalities in brain chemistry create an altered response to alcohol and other drugs which in turn causes a wide array of physical, psychological, and behavioural problems. Although environmental and social factors will influence the progression and expression of the disease, they are NOT in any sense causes of addictive drinking/using.
Alcoholism/addiction is caused by biochemical/neurophysiologic abnormalities that are passed down from one generation to the next, or in some cases acquired through heavy or prolonged drinking or other drug use.
Alcoholism/drug addiction is a primary chronic illness with genetic, biochemical, psychosocial and or environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. The alcoholic or addict has either continuous or periodic loss of control over drinking/using, is preoccupied with the substance, uses it despite the damage it is doing and has distorted thinking most notably denial. The quantity of substance consumed is less important than the effect of the use on the individual’s life and the lives of those around him or her.
When alcohol is metabolized (broken down) in the liver, it is broken down first to acetaldehyde. Alcoholics will store up to 50 percent more acetaldehyde than non-alcoholics, which the liver struggles to eliminate in the form of acetic acid (vinegar). The excess acetaldehyde hitches a ride on red blood cells and mixes with neurotransmitters in the brain forming a new substance called tetrahydroisoquinoline or TIQ. TIQ’s are well received in the brain’s pleasure centers once slight chemical adaptations are made. TIQ’s are similar to opiates producing similar drug seeking behaviour. This will result in the brain shutting down production of its own endorphins (opiates) leaving the alcoholic chemically depressed when using is stopped.
Stages of use
97% employed, 45% professional and managerial positions, 25% white collar workers, 30% manual labourers, 3% skid row
Some professions with high rate of alcoholism physicians, Stockbrokers, attorneys, judges, dentists, clergy,
Group studies of alcoholics have shown intelligence levels slightly above that of comparable groups Example employee studies.
Alcohol and alcoholisms impact on individuals
Alcohol (a toxic substance) reaches every cell and organ in the body
One or two drinks on one occasion disrupts brain wave patterns for two or three months
Alcohol affects the motor ability, reaction time and eyesight of anyone who consumes it
Chronic use hardens the cell membranes causing malnutrition.
Chronic use causes irreversible damage to the:
Central nervous system—–wet brain
Eventually the body organs and tissues become dependent on alcohol or other drugs just to stay feeling normal.
Alcohol is a product of amazing versatility. It will remove stains from designer clothes. It will also remove the clothes off your back. If by chance it is used in sufficient quantity, alcohol will remove furniture from the home, rugs from the floor, food from the table, lining from the stomach, vision from the eyes, and judgment from the mind.
Alcohol will also remove good reputations, good jobs, good friends, happiness from children’s hearts, sanity, freedom, spouses, relationships, man’s ability to adjust and live with his fellow man and even life itself. As a remover of things alcohol has no equal, hence the reason they call it “The GREAT REMOVER”.