Among all sources of the disease, alcohol stands preeminent as a destroyer… It sometimes makes the brain more particularly a seat of its venom, and victim of its cruelties. At another time, it hides itself in the inmost recess of the heart, or coils around it like a serpent; now it fixes upon the lungs; now upon the kidneys, upon the liver, the bladder, the pancreas, the intestines, or the skin…- Benjamin Parsons
Understanding the disease of alcoholism only comes with a full understanding of the substance alcohol—a chemical that poses as a drug and a food capable of creating a pleasurable euphoria, but most importantly, an extraordinary pain.
What is Alcohol?
The vast qualities of alcohol find it classified as three different entities: a chemical, a drug and a food.
Ethyl alcohol, or ethanol, is a by-product of yeast. When yeast is mixed with fruits, potatoes, or berries, for example, it releases an enzyme that converts the sugars in those substances into carbon dioxide and alcohol. This process is called fermentation. Fermentation is used to produce the different types of alcohol commonly consumed by individuals, including: beer, wine, liquor and pure alcohol. What is commonly misunderstood about the alcohol we drink is the wide variety of substances included in producing the substance, many of which are not designed for human consumption because they are very dangerous. These substances include:
- Acetic and lactic acids
- Carbon dioxide
While these substances are considered harmless in minimal amounts, many have proven fatal for unsuspecting drinkers.
Cobalt, for example, was once used to increase the foamy “head” in certain beers. Years went by before researchers finally linked the mineral with a rising cancer rate in beer drinkers. – James R. Milam, Ph.D. in “Under The Influence”
Alcohol is the most commonly used drug in the world, mostly because individuals don’t classify it as a dangerous drug like other illicit substances. Fact of the matter is alcohol is a very dangerous substance—it’s easily accessible and highly addictive! Commonly associated as a depressant, alcohol actually acts as both a sedative and a stimulant depending on the amount consumed. Many studies have shown that low doses of alcohol will:
- Increase blood flow
- Accelerate heart rate
- Excite spinal and brain stem reflexes
- Increase the conduction and transmission of nerve impulses
Because of these common effects, alcohol is considered a stimulant in low doses. As a matter of fact, the stimulating effects of alcohol abuse are often what keep individuals coming back for more. Without the positive euphoria associated with alcohol abuse, many individuals would lose interest in drinking. However, with higher doses of alcohol it quickly becomes a sedative, which slows down vital functions and can cause:
- Slurred speech
- Unsteady movement
- Inability to react quickly or think rationally
- Distorted judgment
- Breathing difficulties
Why Alcohol Rehab?
Alcoholism is a progressive disease and as is worsens, one of the most difficult hurdles is getting an alcoholic to accept that they are addicted to alcohol. An alcoholic is able to drink more and more as their life falls apart due to the extent of their denial. This strong defense mechanism is a big part of alcoholism, allowing the alcoholic to continue drinking alcohol without seeing the seriousness of their alcohol addiction problem or the negative effects of alcohol abuse.
What does that mean?
When a person says they have a problem with alcohol addiction and that they need an alcohol rehab, you should believe them!
I admit to having a drinking problem, but what bothers me is how do I deal with feelings of guilt and shame after drinking alcohol? What I would like to know is – are there specific strategies for making the morning after less hard on my conscience? I often try to quit, even with therapy, but I am only thinking about dealing with what definitely seems to be an alcohol addiction.
On the same token, an individual struggling with alcohol abuse may never see the extent of their problem and not ask for help.
After going through the pages of WhyAlcoholRehab.com, you and your family will be able to recognize the symptoms of alcoholism and have a better grasp on this progressive disease. Understanding the many effects of alcohol abuse will help you or your loved one realize the extent of the addiction and seek proper alcohol rehab.
Alcohol rehab doesn’t just tell people to stop drinking alcohol. Successful inpatient alcohol rehab centers are experienced at helping people change their entire way of thinking and handling life without alcohol as a crutch. A professional alcohol rehab center can offer a variety of alcohol recovery services to ensure the highest rate of success when helping a person become sober.
A person suffering from alcoholism often feels as if the world and everyone is against them, and that nobody can understand what they are going through. Perhaps it helps to know that the alcohol rehab center staff knows exactly what the person is going through, as many of the staff have already undergone alcohol rehab center treatment themselves.
Are you or a loved one struggling with alcohol addiction?Call (888) 647-7576 For a Free Assessment