Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction is a condition characterized by a strong urge to consume alcohol compulsively, often resulting in repeated relapses despite efforts to quit.

What Is Alcohol Addiction?

Alcohol addiction, also known as alcoholism, is a chronic and often progressive condition characterized by a strong and uncontrollable desire to consume alcohol despite negative consequences. It is considered a substance use disorder and can lead to physical dependence on alcohol, as well as psychological and social problems.

Alcohol addiction can develop gradually over time, as a person’s tolerance to alcohol increases and they require more and more of it to achieve the desired effects. Over time, alcohol addiction can cause a range of physical and mental health problems, including liver disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, anxiety, depression, and other psychiatric disorders.

Signs & Symptoms Of Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction can cause a range of physical, psychological, and behavioural symptoms. Some common signs and symptoms of alcohol addiction may include:

  • Cravings for alcohol
  • Tolerance
  • Withdrawal symptoms
  • Loss of control
  • Neglecting responsibilities
  • Social isolation
  • Using alcohol as a coping mechanism
  • Physical health problems
  • Mental health problems

Ketamine Assisted Therapy

Trials showed ketamine-assisted therapy delivered 86% abstinence at 6 months post treatment, which is significantly more than the approximate 25% abstinence in the standard treatment. Trial participants also experienced significant improvement in liver function and substantial decrease in depression.

The results were published in the American journal of psychiatry in January 2022.

 

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Alcohol Addiction Stages

Alcohol addiction, like many addictions, can develop over time and progress through several stages. While the progression of alcohol addiction can vary from person to person, there are some common stages that many individuals go through. These stages include:

Experimental stage

This stage typically occurs during adolescence or young adulthood when an individual first starts experimenting with alcohol. During this stage, drinking is occasional and usually in social settings.

 

Regular use

In this stage, an individual begins to drink regularly, often to cope with stress, anxiety, or other emotional issues. At this stage, the individual may start to drink alone, and the amount of alcohol consumed begins to increase.

Problematic use

During this stage, alcohol use becomes problematic and can cause negative consequences in the individual’s life, such as problems at work, financial issues, or trouble with the law. The individual may begin to experience withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop drinking.

Dependence

At this stage, an individual has developed a physical and psychological dependence on alcohol. They may experience intense cravings and struggle to stop drinking, even when they want to. The individual may experience physical withdrawal symptoms when they stop drinking, such as tremors, sweating, and nausea.

Addiction

In this final stage, an individual’s entire life may revolve around drinking, and they may experience severe negative consequences, such as damaged relationships, job loss, or serious health problems. They may feel unable to stop drinking, despite the harm it is causing in their life.

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