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Alcoholism: The Symptoms And Effects Of The Disease.

969 words - 4 pages

An Alcoholic is defined as someone who shows three of the seven symptoms of alcoholism within a twelve month period. In most cases of alcoholism, the person has a family member that is also an alcoholic; this is because alcoholism is genetic. The short term effects of alcoholism are premature deaths due to organ complications involving the brain, liver, heart and other organs as well as over doses, suicides, homicides, and car accidents. The long term effects of drinking can lead to problems with the digestive system such as an ulcer, inflammation of the pancreas, cirrhosis of the liver, serious problems from physical and nutritional neglect, such as anemia and gastritis, central and peripheral nervous system damage. An alcoholic is someone who shows three or more symptoms of alcoholism and usually has suffered from some of the long and short-term effects of being an alcoholic.To be clinically defined as an alcoholic you must have suffered from three out of the seven symptoms of an alcoholic within a twelve month period. The first of the seven symptoms is the most common. This is tolerance, as authors Katherine Ketcham and William Fasbury say in their book Beyond the Influence "Tolerance, defines as a need for increasingly larger amounts of alcohol in order to achieve intoxication."# This symptom is also the most recognizable, because you know when you start drinking that it does not take that much in order to become intoxicated. However, the more you drink the more it takes you to become intoxicated. The next symptom is a little more serious then increasing tolerance. Withdraw symptoms are those that are shown in an alcoholic when they do not recieve the needed amount of alcohol to keep their body functioning. The first of these symptoms is hand tremor, when a person cannot keep a sterdy hand because their body needs alcohol. The next two symptoms are sweating and elevated heart rate. These are also signs that the body has become regulated through the alcohol and now needs a certain amount to function normally.The last of the seven symptoms of an alcoholic are the most serious of them all. Nausea, hallucinations, and seizures or psychotic symptoms are the most serious because they are telling you that your body needs more alcohol in order to simply stay alive, as well as to function normally. The third symptom of an alcoholic is when a person is drinking in larger amounts over longer periods of time then originally intented. This symptom can be extremely harmful because it shows a loss of control. The next symptom is persistent desire or unsuccessful attempts to cut down or control drinking. At this point the person has lost control of their drinking and they cannot help themselves anymore. The fifth symptom is shown when a person is spending a significant amount of time trying to obtain alcohol, drink alcohol, or recover from its...

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