Alcohol Abuse

Abuse as defined by Webster’s Dictionary is the “wrong or improper use; misuse: the abuse of privileges.” When someone is abusing alcohol they may be drinking excessive amounts of alcoholic beverages despite the fact that it is negatively affecting his/her job or career, health, home, education, relationship and social life. Approximately twenty percent of men and ten percent of woman are affected by Alcohol abuse. The majority of them had their first taste of alcohol when they were just teenagers.

Alcohol Intoxication

It is quite easy to spot an intoxicated person. An intoxicated person will have a heavy smell of alcohol on their breath. As the person sweats the alcohol may seep out of their pores and you will be able to smell it on their skin. The eyes of an intoxicated person may be glazed over, and/ or bloodshot and they may exhibit a very passive attitude and become argumentative. Lastly, intoxicated person may go from being a neat and well kept person to a person that does not care about their appearance or their personal hygiene at all.


The dependence on alcohol is a serious addiction in this country and all over the world. Despite the fact that alcohol is legally obtained and used socially by people from every walk of life, the disease of alcoholism is a destructive one. The symptoms of alcoholism are a high tolerance for alcohol or withdrawal from alcohol, when one uses more alcohol and uses alcohol a lot longer. Also, when someone has a problem slowing down or simply can’t stop drinking. Furthermore, when someone is spending quite a bit of time and energy trying to get something to drink and most all of their time is spent drinking alcohol, or getting over a drinking binge. If someone’s normal functioning has been impaired tremendously and his/ her life is being negatively affected by the constant drinking.

Alcoholism is disease and the third most common “mental illness”. It affects more than 14 million people in America. The patterns of alcoholism affect approximately 10 percent of men and about 4 percent of women. According to statistics, annually more than $165 billion dollars is spent on treatment for alcoholism, premature deaths due to alcoholism and diminished productivity due to alcoholism.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), about 43 percent of adults in the United States (76 million Americans) have grown up with an alcoholic, married an alcoholic or a problem drinker or had an alcoholic blood relative or problem drinker in their family. The CDC reports that 14,406 have been attributed to alcoholic liver disease and excluding accidents and homicides, a staggering 23,199 have been attributed to what is termed “alcohol induced death.”

The Narconon Program provides an excellent alternative to 12 step rehabs.

Five stages of Alcoholism

The Disease Model of Alcoholism is the basic premise that a person suffering from alcoholism exhibits certain symptoms, causes, and methods of treatment. Also, within the Disease Model there exist five progressive stages of the disease.

  1. Early or Adaptive Stage
  2. Middle Stage
  3. Late Stage
  4. Treating Alcoholism
  5. Relapse to drinking

The Early or Adaptive Stage of Alcoholism

In the early or adaptive stage of alcoholism the drinker is drinking regularly and is developing a tolerance for alcohol. At this point they still have a fair level of day to day functioning on the job, at home and in their social life that is barely noticeable by those closest to the drinker. At this stage of the diseases development the drinker begins to develop a dependency on alcohol and use as a stress reliever and mood alter. In this stage, when the blood alcohol level in the blood gets low the drinker have trouble with his/ her cognitive skills (impaired thinking).

During this stage the drinker is able to tolerate more alcohol and therefore will drink more but show little sign of intoxication while still able to operate on a functional level. The ability of the drinker to consume large quantities alcohol is not the reason he or she is able to tolerate the increasing amounts of it, it is because of the physiological changes going on inside of the drinkers body. Because an alcoholic in the early stage is able drink more and not be intoxicated, have a hangover and not be affected by the alcohol it is hard to differentiate the alcohol from a heavy drinking non-alcoholic. There will be no visible signs that his or her work or everyday conduct and performance is affected. The alcoholic has no clue that they are changing. They just feel like they able to enjoy a little more liquor, beer or wine than everybody else.

Middle Stage

During this stage the drinker feels the need to drink more in order to get drunk or intoxicated. The drinker by now doesn’t realize his or her bodies need for/ dependence on the alcohol. This is the stage where the denial of the possibility of an alcohol problem comes in. According to the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, a drinker will attempt to justify their drinking habit by promising creating plans and promises not drink at or before certain times of the day or on certain occasions. But eventually these plans and promises are broken the more the drinker becomes more and more dependent on alcohol. With the progression of dependency on the alcohol the less stable the drinker’s everyday lifestyle becomes. At this stage progression to the next stage of alcoholism is not really known, there is no time limit for this stage. But symptoms such as Blackouts are a sign that alcoholism is seriously progressing

The Late Stage of Alcoholism

In the late stage of alcoholism the alcoholics mind and body are visible deteriorating from the damaging effects of his or her continual progressive alcohol consumption. An alcoholic at this point may be impoverished, sickly, often disoriented. By now they drink constantly when ever and whatever the can. The alcohol by now is doing both physical damage to their body’s vital organs but also, it has seriously damaged their mind. They have a low immunity and they may end up suffering from many different illnesses, some irreversible. Some illnesses include heart failure, fatty liver and hepatitis, pancreatitis, cirrhosis of the liver and malnutrition, respiratory infections, and brain damage.

The Narconon Detoxification Program can help reverse the damage done by alcohol.

Responsibility for Treatment

An alcoholic is an addicted person and alcohol is a drug. That being said, an alcoholic/addict must first accept the fact that he or she has a problem for any treatment, whether forced or voluntary, to work effectively. Alcoholics and addicts need treatment. Although some have broken the cycle of addiction alone they are few and far between. Treatment works.

Relapse to Drinking

Relapse is when an alcoholic returns to his or old drinking habits. Unfortunately is often a very frustrating treatment reality. Things such as; bad treatment or follow-up, cravings for alcohol, alcoholic not following treatment plan, same lifestyle, other drugs, and untreated mental or physical illnesses. Relapse does not always mean a return to constant drinking. It might be once and for all but deal with it. Get help.