Dr. Roxanne Dryden-Edwards is an adult, child, and adolescent psychiatrist. She is a former Chair of the Committee on Developmental Disabilities for the American Psychiatric Association, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, and Medical Director of the National Center for Children and Families in Bethesda, Maryland.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Alcoholism is a substance-use disorder in which the sufferer has problems managing how much alcohol they drink and their lives as a result.
The symptoms of alcoholism include tolerance to alcohol, withdrawal episodes, using more alcohol for longer periods of time, and problems managing life issues due to alcohol.
Alcoholism is caused by a number of individual, family, genetic, and social factors rather than by any one cause.
Although a number of genes play a role in the development of alcoholism, this is a disease in which other factors more strongly influence its occurrence.
Alcoholism is diagnosed by evaluating whether the individual shows a number of symptoms of problem drinking on a regular basis.
Alcoholism treatment is usually treated based on the stage of the addiction, ranging from management of risk factors and education to intensive residential treatment followed by long-term outpatient care and support.
Alcohol is the most frequently used drug by teenagers in the United States. Significant statistics regarding alcohol use in teens include that about half of junior high and senior high school students drink alcohol on a monthly basis, and 14% of teens have been intoxicated at least once in the past year. Nearly 8% of teens who drink say they drink at least five or more alcoholic drinks in a row (binge drink).
What are the dangerous effects of alcohol use in teens?
Just a few of the many dangers of alcohol use in teens include the following:
Alcohol decreases teens' ability to pay attention.
Teens who have experienced alcohol withdrawal tend to have difficulties
The teenage brain that has been exposed to alcohol is at risk for being
smaller in certain parts.
In contrast to adults, teens tend to abuse alcohol with other substances,
Male teens who drink heavily tend to complete fewer years of education
compared to male teens who do not.
The younger a person is when they begin drinking, the more likely they are
to develop a problem with alcohol.
Each year, almost 2,000 people under the age of 21 years die in car crashes
in which underage drinking is involved. Alcohol is involved in nearly half of
all violent deaths involving youth.
In 2010, 56% of drivers aged 15 to 20 who were killed in motor-vehicle
crashes after drinking and driving were not wearing a seat belt.
More than three times the number of
eighth-grade girls who drink heavily said they have attempted suicide compared
to girls in that grade who do not drink.
Intoxication is associated with suicide attempts using more lethal methods,
and positive blood alcohol levels are often found in people who complete
Teens who drink are more likely to engage in sexual activity, have
unprotected sex, have sex with a stranger, or be the victim or perpetrator of a
Excess alcohol use can cause or mask other emotional problems, like anxiety
Drinking in excess can lead to the use of other drugs, like marijuana,
cocaine, or heroin.
The Relationship of Chronic Viral Hepatitis, Alcoholism, and Cirrhosis to Liver Cancer
The most common diseases associated with liver cancer
are chronic viral hepatitis, alcoholism, and cirrhosis(scarring of
the liver). Moreover, chronic viral hepatitis is common in alcoholism,
and both viral hepatitis and alcoholism cause cirrhosis which usually precedes the
development of cancer. Therefore, the contributions and interrelationships
of alcohol abuse, viral hepatitis, and cirrhosis in the development of liver
cancer are complex.