Alcohol Abuse

Missing Brain Connections Put Teens at Higher Risk for Alcoholism

Missing Brain Connections Put Teens at Higher Risk for Alcoholism

Posted on January 14th, 2015

Teenagers at risk for future alcoholism tend to have reduced connections in key brain regions, new research finds.

The impaired functioning found in the four-part study from Georgetown University Medical Center and the University of Maryland School of Medicine was not entirely new information: a connection between such reduced functioning and alcohol abuse had been found in previous research. However, those studies left doubt about whether impaired function was a cause of alcohol abuse or whether alcohol abuse was a cause of impaired functioning. By using the Drug Use Screening Inventory questionnaire to predict future alcohol use disorders, this study was able to show that reduced brain development likely contributes to alcohol abuse rather than the other way around.

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10 Risks of Holiday Drinking

10 Risks of Holiday Drinking

Posted on November 25th, 2014

When the holiday season rolls around, there are many good reasons to avoid tipping a few too many back and no real good ones for getting tanked with alcohol. Some of the risks may be familiar, while others may not immediately come to mind. Still, it pays to be aware of these 10 risks of holiday drinking — and do something proactive about them:

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Anxiety-Increases-Risk-for-Alcohol-Problems

Anxiety Increases Risk for Alcohol Problems

Posted on October 24th, 2014

Anxiety is a mental state characterized by a prominent sense of fear, dread or unease. Some people have an unusually high level of sensitivity to this state that can significantly increase the odds of developing a diagnosable mental health condition called an anxiety disorder. In a study scheduled for publication in 2014 in the journal Addiction, researchers from two U.S. universities explored the impact that heightened anxiety sensitivity and the motivation to use alcohol as a coping mechanism have on the chances that an adult will developing serious alcohol-related problems.

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Even-Moderate-Drinking-Harms-Older-Adults-Memories-2

Even Moderate Drinking Harms Older Adults’ Memories

Posted on October 20th, 2014

Excessive alcohol consumption is linked to a range of serious health problems, including disruption of memory. Public health guidelines for moderate levels of alcohol intake are specifically intended to reduce to the odds that any given person will experience alcohol-related harm. In a study published in September 2014 in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, researchers from the University of Florida looked at the negative impact that even moderate alcohol consumption can have on older adults’ ability to use an essential form of memory called working memory.

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BMI,-Gender-Affect-Young-Adults-Alcohol-Consumption

BMI, Gender Affect Young Adults’ Alcohol Consumption

Posted on October 17th, 2014

People who consume alcohol excessively in episodes of binge drinking or regularly maintain a pattern of heavy drinking have clearly increased risks for a range of alcohol-related problems, including potentially fatal accidents and alcohol use disorder (diagnosable alcohol abuse/alcoholism). In a study published in September 2014 in the International Journal of Drug Policy, researchers from two U.S. universities examined the connection that body fat measurements called BMI scores have to the amount of alcohol typically consumed by young men, as well as to the amount of alcohol typically consumed by young women.

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Using-Text-Messaging-to-Alter-Drinking-Behavior-in-Young-Adults

Using Text Messaging to Alter Drinking Behavior in Young Adults

Posted on September 28th, 2014

A new study from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that using text messaging to acquire data that calculates and keeps track of one’s drinking can not only offer immediate feedback and information to people discharged from the hospital, but it can also cut down on drink-related issues and accidents.

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Stress Often to Blame for Alcohol Use Disorder

Problems Early in Life Predict Binge Drinking, Study Finds

Posted on September 8th, 2014

Binge drinking, also known as heavy episodic drinking, is an abusive form of alcohol consumption characterized by imbibing enough alcohol in a single drinking episode to meet or exceed the minimum standards for legal intoxication. Young adults between the ages of 21 and 34 have higher rates for this behavior than the members of any other age group. In a study published in July 2014 in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, researchers from the University of Washington examined the factors in adolescence and earlier stages of childhood that increase the odds that a young adult will participate in binge drinking at two later stages: the initial entry into adulthood and the first few years of his or her 30s.

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People-Who-Drink-to-Relieve-Craving-Lift-Mood-Headed-Down-Path-to-Alcoholism-2

People Who Drink to Relieve Craving, Lift Mood Headed Down Path to Alcoholism

Posted on September 3rd, 2014

Tens of millions of people in the U.S. are both alcohol consumers and cigarette smokers. Millions of Americans also have simultaneous problems with alcohol use disorder (alcohol abuse/alcoholism) and nicotine addiction. Both drinking and smoking can contribute to an increase in negative emotional states such as depression and anxiety. In a study published in July 2014 in the journal Addictive Behaviors, researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles assessed the relative impact of alcohol use and cigarette use on negative mood changes. These researchers concluded that the key factor in these mood changes is alcohol craving.

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Alcohol-Overdose-Can-Happen-Fast-2

Alcohol Overdose Can Happen Fast

Posted on September 2nd, 2014

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, moderate drinking is defined as no more than one drink a day for females or two drinks a day for males. Few American drinkers consume alcohol in a way that shows they are aware of such guidelines. Everything from happy-hour specials to peer pressure makes it easy to overdrink without intending to do so. And it’s possible to overdose on alcohol, which can be dangerous and even fatal.

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Stress Often to Blame for Alcohol Use Disorder

Stress Often to Blame for Alcohol Use Disorder

Posted on August 19th, 2014

Stress is a common fact of everyday life. However, in addition to unavoidable daily stress, some people get exposed to major stressful events that can have a lasting impact on their mental health and well-being. In a study slated for publication in 2014 in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, a team of New Zealand researchers tracked the impact that exposure to seriously stressful events has on a young adult’s chances of developing alcohol use disorder. The researchers concluded that major stress can substantially increase the odds of experiencing the symptoms of this condition.

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BingeDrinkingIncreasestheRiskforAlcoholProblemsLater

Binge Drinking Increases the Risk for Alcohol Problems Later

Posted on August 11th, 2014

A study published in the May 15, 2014 issue of the journal Biological Psychiatry reports that people who participate in binge drinking in their early 20s may be at higher risk for alcohol-related problems later in life.

Binge drinking is associated with a number of risks. Individuals who engage in binge drinking are more likely to behave impulsively, resulting in injuries or involvement in an assault. Impulsive behavior can also lead to dangerous sexual behaviors, which can then lead to an unplanned pregnancy or contracting a sexually transmitted disease.

These risks may seem remote to people in their 20s enjoying their newly legal drinking status. Heavy social drinking during college years can appear to be a rite of passage for some students, but binge drinking comes with a multitude of potential problems that can follow a binge-drinking individual and derail him or her from future plans.

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The Secret to Happiness? Drinking Less Alcohol.

The Secret to Happiness? Drinking Less Alcohol.

Posted on August 5th, 2014

Men who moderate their alcohol intake generally lead happier, more fulfilling lives, a 75-year long Harvard study shows.

In 1938, the Grant Study set out following 268 Harvard undergraduate men in order to determine what factors contribute most strongly to human flourishing. Dr. George Vaillant, who directed the extensive and detailed project for over 30 years, discovered there was a direct correlation between a man’s drinking habits and his overall level of health and well-being.

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Energy Drinks Lead to Wide-Awake Drunks

Energy Drinks Lead to Wide-Awake Drunks

Posted on August 4th, 2014

In the U.S., significant numbers of teenagers and (typically young) adults combine high-caffeine beverages called energy drinks with alcohol. This combination can seriously endanger a person’s health and well-being. In a study published in June 2014 in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, researchers from Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis used laboratory experiments on mice to conduct a detailed examination of the impact that caffeine has on an alcohol-intoxicated state. These researchers concluded that caffeine’s effect on alcohol intoxication can substantially increase the dangers associated with being drunk.

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How Do I Tell a Friend He Has a Drinking Problem?

How Do I Tell a Friend He Has a Drinking Problem?

Posted on August 1st, 2014

Seeing a friend spiraling into self-destruction is never a pleasant experience. Not only will you be witnessing somebody you care about hurting him or herself, you’re also thrown into the uncomfortable position of having to decide what to do about it. It might not be the most appealing notion, but real friends look out for each other, and that means that you have to share your concerns if you care about your friend. Knowing how to do this is much more difficult, but there are many things to consider that should make the process go as smoothly as possible.

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