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Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism – You Carry Alcohol With You

early warning sign of alcoholism - hidden bottle of jack daniels

People with a family history of alcoholism may develop a tolerance to alcohol that causes them to drink more in order to feel the same effects, says a study from the Indiana University School of Medicine.

S.L. Morzorati, V. Ramchandani, L. Flury, T-K Li, S. O’Connor. “Alcohol Tolerance Associated With Family History.” Journal of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 14 August 2002. Indiana University.

Why might this matter to you?

Well, if you have family members who are alcoholics, this could explain why your tolerance is so much higher than other people. This could also result in you drinking more in order to get a buzz.

And it’s often directly related to the fourth Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism: “You carry a supply of alcohol with you so you won’t be without it.”

In the study, subjects with a family history of alcoholism AT FIRST reported GREATER feelings of intoxication after receiving alcohol intravenously.

However, these same subjects adapted to the effects of alcohol until their perceptions of being intoxicated matched those of people without a family history of alcoholism. Basically, they developed what’s called an “acute tolerance” to alcohol.

How Can I Use This Information?

If you have a greater tolerance for alcohol than your friends and maybe you’ve even started to hide booze so you’re never without a bottle, your genetics may have helped contribute to this in the first place.

Some studies show that genetics can be a 50% indicator of alcoholism. The other 50% can be due to poor coping skills, according to a 1999 study.

So, improve your coping skills, and you’ll be halfway there to changing your pattern of abuse. Here are two websites with some good tips on learning better coping skills:

As always, we’re here for you and with you all the way.

To your good health.

Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism – Finding It Hard to Stop Drinking Once You Start

Nicotine use can actually promote alcohol dependence, according to a study by the Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) published earlier this year.

R. M. Leao, F. C. Cruz, L. F. Vendruscolo, G. de Guglielmo, M. L. Logrip, C. S. Planeta, B. T. Hope, G. F. Koob, O. George. Chronic Nicotine Activates Stress/Reward-Related Brain Regions and Facilitates the Transition to Compulsive Alcohol Drinking. Journal of Neuroscience, 2015; 35 (15): 6241 DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3302-14.2015

If you are a drinker who also smokes, this could be life-changing information for you if you recognize in yourself the third Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism:

You find yourself drawn to alcohol no matter what you are doing, and you find it hard to stop once you start drinking.”

Why do smokers have a five to ten times higher risk of developing alcohol dependence than non-smokers? Do they have a greater tendency to addiction in general or is there something about nicotine that is linked to increased alcohol consumption?

The Scripps study clearly showed that nicotine exposure promoted alcohol dependence in rats.

It’s a vicious cycle,” said TSRI biologist Oliver George, a senior author of the study. “Nicotine makes individuals crave alcohol to reward the brain and reduce stress.”

The researchers also showed that the combination of nicotine and alcohol activated a unique group of neurons. This activation provided positive reinforcement to continue the alcohol and nicotine use.

The rats in the study that were exposed to both nicotine and alcohol vapor began drinking the equivalent of a six-pack in just three weeks.

We had never seen such a rapid escalation of alcohol drinking before,” said George.

How Can I Use This Information?

If you are drawn to alcohol and find it hard to stop once you start drinking, and you’re also a smoker, this combination could be making your situation worse.

If you’d like to stop smoking first, you may want to start here: address nicotine cravings

As always, we’re here for you and with you all the way.

To your good health.

Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism – Thinking About Where Your Next Drink Is Coming From

Lack of ultimate meaning in life is directly associated with alcohol abuse, drug addiction and mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, according to a study done at Florida Atlantic University.

Naelys Diaz, E. Gail Horton, Tammy Malloy. Attachment Style, Spirituality, and Depressive Symptoms Among Individuals in Substance Abuse Treatment. Journal of Social Service Research, 2014; 40 (3): 313 DOI: 10.1080/01488376.2014.896851

This is significant.

The second Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism is: “You have started to think about where your next drink is coming from and/or you plan social or work events around access to alcohol.”

So what this study demonstrates is that people without an adequate feeling of meaning to their life (you could also call this “a sense of direction”) will have more time on their hands to potentially focus on planning their next drink.

Study authors Horton, Luna and Malloy developed a research model that looks at how creativity, service and solitude can be used in addiction treatment to help create purpose and meaning in life.

They found that encouraging people’s creative talents (painting, writing, playing an instrument, etc), giving people opportunities to serve others, and helping people to connect to their core values and their true self through spiritual outlets such as prayer and meditation helped them to discover an ultimate purpose and meaning as part of their recovery process.

How Can I Use This Information?

If you identify with feelings like having no sense of direction in your life or feeling like you don’t matter to anyone, this may be making your situation with alcohol far worse than you realized.

If you’re at the point where you’re ready to get help, you may want to start here:

As always, we’re here for you and with you all the way.

To your good health.

Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism – Drinking More Than You Had Intended to Drink

A recent study done at the University of Missouri-Columbia shows that chronic alcohol use, when combined with repeated binge drinking, causes more damage to the liver than previously thought.

Shivendra Shukla, Annayya Aroor, Ricardo Restrepo, Kusum Kharbanda, Jamal Ibdah. In Vivo Acute on Chronic Ethanol Effects in Liver: A Mouse Model Exhibiting Exacerbated Injury, Altered Metabolic and Epigenetic Responses. Biomolecules, 2015; 5 (4): 3280 DOI: 10.3390/biom5043280

This is an alarming study.

And since the first Early Warning Sign of Alcoholism is: “You regularly drink more than you intend to,” you may want to look at these study results if you think you fall into this category.

Binge drinking is the most common form of excessive alcohol consumption in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that approximately one in six adults binge drinks about four times each month.

Heavy binge drinking by those who habitually consume alcohol is the most common cause of liver damage in chronic alcoholic liver disease,” said Shivendra Shukla, Ph.D., Professor of Medical Pharmacology and Physiology at the MU School of Medicine and lead author of the study.

We know that this behavior causes large fatty deposits in the liver that ultimately impair the organ’s ability to function properly.”

Dr. Shukla went on to note that in mice exposed to both chronic use and repeat binge episodes, liver damage increased tremendously. Even more shocking was the extent of fatty deposits in the livers of those exposed to chronic plus binge alcohol, as it was approximately 13 times higher than the control group.

Read again what that says: 13 times more fatty deposits (damage) to the liver when someone drinks chronically and binge drinks repeatedly.

How Can I Use This Information?

If you self-diagnose as a habitual consumer of alcohol AND you binge drink regularly, the damage you are causing to your liver is likely far worse than you realized.

If you’re at the point where you’re ready to get help, you may want to try these suggestions: things to do instead of drinking

As always, we’re here for you and with you all the way.

To your good health.