The Warning Signs of alcohol Abuse
The spectrum of behaviors that gradually lead to alcohol or drug abuse and
addiction begins with experimentation, usually in adolescence. Experimentation
progresses to casual use, which can easily become regular use, heavy use, abuse,
and finally dependence. Once a person becomes addicted to alcohol or drugs, he
often conceals his use, abandoning family and friends in favor of the social
group that abuses the substance. The only way out of the cycle of drug dependence
is abstinence, fortified by a formal substance abuse treatment program.
Relapse is not uncommon following treatment. The warning signs of substance
abuse vary, depending on the substance being used. In general, however, certain
behaviors such as the following may indicate a problem with alcohol or another
drug. Call your doctor, an employee assistance program, or a substance abuse
hotline if you or anyone you know displays any of the following warning signs:
drug symptoms treatment and maintenance
• absenteeism or a decline in quality of work at job or school
• uncharacteristic outbreaks of temper
• avoidance of responsibility
• deterioration of appearance and grooming
• wearing sunglasses indoors or at night, or a glazed appearance to the eyes
• wearing only long-sleeved shirts, even in hot weather
• repeatedly borrowing money
• stealing from home or employer
• secretive behavior, including frequent, unexplained trips to the rest room or
• acquaintance with known drug abusers
The Dangers of Alcohol and Other Drugs
How to Treat a Hangover
Ahangover manifests itself as a combination of symptoms, including headache, dry
mouth, and mild dizziness. It is still unclear exactly why overindulging in alcohol
produces a hangover, but several factors come into play. Alcohol causes your body to lose
water by stimulating your kidneys to excrete more water than you drink, resulting in dehydration.
The more alcohol you drink, the more water passes out of your body. Alcohol also
widens blood vessels, and the widening of vessels around the brain may cause pain, much
as it does in a migraine headache.
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Once you have a hangover, there isn’t very much you can do to make yourself feel better.
You just may have to let it run its course. Be sure to drink plenty of liquids, such as
water, fruit juice, or bland soda. Avoid drinking coffee because the caffeine it contains
will make you even more dehydrated. Never fight a hangover by having another alcoholic
drink in the morning because your body will take even longer to eliminate the alcohol circulating
in your bloodstream. Use an over-the-counter pain medication such as aspirin,
acetaminophen, or ibuprofen if you have a headache, but remember that these painkillers
can irritate your stomach, and excessive doses of acetaminophen may be toxic to your
liver when combined with alcohol (see warning box below).
The best way to handle a hangover is to avoid getting one by not drinking too much in
the first place. Always have a couple of glasses of water with your drinks, and drink more
water before going to bed to avoid becoming dehydrated.
The Effects of Alcohol on Your Sexual Performance
Social drinking lowers your inhibitions and may make you feel more ready to have sex, but too much alcohol can actually impair your sexual function. Alcohol is neither an aphrodisiac nor a stimulant. It is a central nervous system depressant that slows down your responses, making it harder to get an erection or to ejaculate. Drinking alcohol also can impair your judgment, making you less likely to practice safer sex But the sexual problems that can arise after having a few drinks are mild compared with the effects of chronic alcoholism on your body. Alcoholism can
obstruct the blood supply to the nerves in the penis, resulting in erectile dysfunction. The liver damage caused by alcohol can increase the levels of the female hormone estrogen and lower the levels of the male hormone testosterone in your body, leading to breast enlargement, shrunken testicles, and a reduced sperm count. If you have a problem getting or maintaining an erection and you think it may be related to excessive alcohol consumption, cut back on your drinking for a few weeks to see if your ability to have an erection improves. You need to get help
for your drinking problem. Ask your doctor what kind of alcohol-treatment programs are in your community or call the local chapter of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Alcoholic Gastritis Affected And Treatment