Curbing Alcoholism

Alcoholism means that drinking alcohol becomes an important, or sometimes the most important, factor in one’s life and they feel they’re unable to function without it.It might be surprising to hear that you don’t always have to be drinking to extreme levels to become dependent

Celebration without drinking alcohol – YES, it’s possible to survive by celebrating Life instead!

Does the very thought give you jitters by creating a heavy load of doubts in your mind? Or does it sound like a lame April Fools’ Day joke? Just don’t dismiss it or press the panic button…nope, not yet! It may be that you’ve been a part of various celebrations which centered around consuming alcohol, well why not challenge yourself and try a different route – celebrate Life instead? Celebrations do not necessarily have to be planned around drinking alcohol and they can be equally enjoyable too – sorry to burst your ‘happy’ bubble!

Celebratory events and alcohol consumption have become synonymous for many people. Just the way stressful or sad events make people want to ‘drown their sorrows’ or ‘gulp down those tears and that anger with alcohol’, happy events can also act as potential trigger which makes you feel the need to get even ‘happier with alcoholic buzz’.

For people already struggling with alcohol abuse, even happy occasions planned around alcohol consumption can pose as a looming threat against remaining sober. To refrain from falling in the trap of ‘only one drink’ may be daunting but it is not impossible, it only requires your ‘will’, well a very strong will! You could begin by avoiding attendance to parties and such events which are only about getting hammered.  It’s not always possible to live like a hermit, so if you doubt your will power of steering clear of alcohol and you absolutely must attend an event or a party, you could ask a trusted friend to tag along who could be a ‘sober company’ to you. Sometimes, refusing that one friendly drink with your boss or colleague may get tricky, but remember the price that you’d have to pay to ‘please’ someone. So ask yourself if it’s worth it. You could have some fun of your own – hold a glass of non-alcoholic beverage in your hand and let those peached pesters be fooled, a win-win for both!

Go shake a leg and that booty on the dance floor, sing and make merry, just don’t be tempted to have that ‘one sip’ of Bloody Mary! One more clever trick to remember is to have an ‘exit strategy’ handy when you find the temptation too much to handle.Do you realize that you can form deep human bonds without using the ladder of intoxication as you can connect with people in a more real sense?  You can give the rightly deserved attention to the conversations and people as you interact during celebrations and social events SOBER.

You can navigate your way through to an alcohol-free life if you choose to do so. No matter how you do it, promise yourself that you wouldn’t buckle under the peer pressure, stand your ground because ‘no means no’, right? Remember to keep that promise. Initially you may feel the hiccups as it may not appear to be very gratifying, but in the long run you’ll find it to be very liberating. Things do not change overnight so have some patience.

Why drink alcohol when you can get high on life? Think.

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Effects of Alcohol on the Elderly

Alcohol, one of the most widely prevalent of all social glues across cultures, has already been proven to be the cause of multiple disorders, illnesses and psychological ailments in people of all age groups. When it comes to people above the age of 60, alcohol can have even more devastating effects, especially if consumed in large quantities. In general, it has been observed that old people – and by this, we mean men and women above the age of 60 – tend to consume lesser quantities of alcohol as compared to people between the ages of 18 to 35. As people grow older, their bodies undergo metamorphosis and become more and more vulnerable to substances which are considered harmful for regular consumption. The risk of chronic illnesses grows with age. The elderly tend to consume more medication than younger ones. All these factors can make alcohol a massive health risk for the elderly, if consumed recklessly.

The elderly become more sensitive to alcohol effects with age:

The limited amount of research available with various health forums suggest that with increasing age, human beings tend to become more sensitive to the negative effects of consuming alcohol. With increasing age, the capacity of the human body to retain water decreases significantly. The consumption of alcohol makes this tendency even worse, leading to acute dehydration. Thus, older people tend to exhibit a higher BAC (blood alcohol concentration) than youngsters after consuming the same measure. This is why the elderly might experience the common side effects of consuming hard liquor such as difficulty in focurbssing, slurred speech patterns, and a general lack of mental coordination and numbness even earlier than their younger counterparts. Therefore, it is common to see the elderly having difficulty holding the same amount of alcohol that they could easily withstand in their former years.

Alcohol, when mixed with prescription drugs, can lead to severe poisoning:

Due to developing health issues, many older people have to consume prescription drugs and herbal treatment courses. You might have heard the common saying “do not consume alcohol when on antibiotics”. This holds true for prescription drugs as well. Alcohol is known to leave an effect on the medicines such that they don’t function properly and lead to several side effects, which may prove to be life threatening. Mixing alcoholic substances with a few types of medicines can prove to be fatal – especially sedatives, hypnotics. These can cause sleepiness, nausea, vertigo, a general lack of awareness about the surroundings and other physiological issues.

Furthermore, one of the most prevalent reasons for the rise of heart disease among the elderly is he consumption of excessive amounts of alcohol. Alcohol makes you sluggish and leads to the fortification of blockages, which makes it difficult for blood to flow freely in the veins and arteries leading up to the heart. Excessive clogging can lead to severe heart problems and alcohol is one of the foremost culprits when it comes to heart related diseases in men and women above 60.

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Couples helping each other Cope with Drinking

Happy couples do things together. If not, they support their partners in their choices and are there with them through thick and thin. Drinking can get addictive and out of hands at times. This is a time when people becomes detached and sometimes even go into depression. However, things can be easier when you have a loving partner by your side. It is not easy for the other partner as well because living with an alcoholic can be a rather stressful process. At one level, relating to your partner might become a problem in itself as you would be reminded of all things your partner could be doing instead of immersing himself/herself in alcohol. But with love come acceptance and a sense of empathy. And you need to hold on to these qualities tight during the tough time.

There is no one way to tackle such a difficult situation but one has to start somewhere. Here is what couples can do to help each other cope with drinking:

1. Acceptance: They say accepting a situation is the first step to put it right. You need to come to terms with the fact that your partner is an alcoholic or has taken to the problem. You need to analyse all the signs that give you this feeling. The moment your partner turns from a social drinker to a habitual drinker and finally to an addict. Keeping an eye out on the changes would help you cope with the problem.

2. Think about the underlying cause: There has to be a reason for the sudden alcoholism as it can’t simply emerge out of nowhere. It could be a tough work situation, dipping sales, loss in business, job issues or something really personal. Depression is said to be a major cause of people taking to alcohol. And there is sometimes no palpable reason for it. Your partner might seem to have a fulfilled life but deep within there might be a vacuum that could be causing stress and anxiety. Your role as a partner is to understand the cause and not be judgmental or rude about it. Sometimes, you have to devise non-conventional rules to handle the situation. Being too haughty about the situation might turn it for the worst. You wouldn’t want that.

3. Seek help: Sometimes you cannot handle everything by yourself. It is necessary to seek professional help for your partner. However, it must be done with the utmost sensitivity. In addition, options such as rehab centres are not a bad option. In fact, they are said to be beneficial. You need to let go off all the taboos and take on the situation in a forth-right manner.

4. Make them feel loved: The natural response to alcoholism is aggression. Sometimes, the other partner may take time to come to terms with it and respond with anger. Instead, talk to your spouse and make them feel loved and desired. This could help them deal with it better and come out of the addiction.

5. Always make room for other things: Life is too beautiful and to come out of one addiction, there has to be another. Sounds weird? But it works. Your aim should be to indulge your partner in other activities. Slowly you will see the results. When they see how loved they are, they are bound to change. Don’t give up on hope.

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