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An alcoholic is a person who tends to consume too much alcohol, which finally leaves a negative impact on physical or mental health and subsequently negatively influences the family, social as well as occupational responsibilities of an individual. Alcoholics have a tendency of being drunk daily and are in most cases men of middle age (Neill n.pag.). Despite of different factors which influence alcoholism, it is notable that for those individuals who drink too much and have probably made alcoholism their way of life, there are a number of characteristics which are common for all of them (Neill n.pag.).
Characteristics of an Alcoholic
It is crystal clear that very often chronic drinkers display anger. As a matter of fact, a very small remark or criticism towards alcoholics can make them really angry and frustrated. Besides, this great anger can be applied into different violent actions and cause a lot of physical and mental pain for the families of alcoholics. To receive a temporary calming they drink more and more, and this only furthers their addiction to alcohol. Alcoholics are also characterized as very anxious (Neill n.pag.). However, their continuous consumption of alcohol helps them relieve from this anxiety. When the effects of the alcohol disappear, the alcoholics experience a period of depression and this in turn leads a chronic drinker to more alcoholism. Another characteristic of an alcoholic is poor self-image. In most cases, alcoholics have a very low self-esteem. Owing to the fact that worthlessness proves to be a strong feeling, chronic drinkers make alcohol consumption their defense mechanism (Personal Wellness Network n.pag.). Additionally, chronic drinkers are victims of fear and/or failure and self-pity. The alcoholics also have a feeling of isolation; they tend to separate themselves from other people. Moreover, they tend to feel that no one loves them, thus end up blaming other people for everything. An alcoholic furthermore carries a great deal of shame because of his inability to be a decent family man, caring about his natives and making them happy (Neill n.pag.).
Causes of Alcoholism
There are three stages of alcoholism. The first one is an earliest stage when an individual uses alcohol to affect his/her mood. Involvement into drinking is motivated by their desire to get rid of stress and problems they might be having and resultantly their thoughts get occupied with drinking and alcohol (Neill n.pag.). First, an individual as well as people around him may hardly notice that he/she is being involved into alcoholism. Usually an individual is likely to consume larger amounts of alcohol without looking affected. At this stage a body of an alcoholic gets used to increasing amounts of alcohol, but later on it starts losing its ability of dealing with alcohol at all (Personal Wellness Network n.pag.). At the middle stage of alcoholism, both a desire and need to get drunk become more difficult to deny and more intense. Moreover, an alcoholic tends to drink early in the morning. Besides, there is a tendency among chronic drinkers to lose control over drinking and get intoxicated very easily. Sometimes the alcoholics begin to realize that they have become addicted but unfortunately cannot determine the amount of alcohol their body can handle (Personal Wellness Network n.pag.). Ordinarily, the alcoholics deny that excessive drinking is a problem. Among the regular physical symptoms which affect alcoholics are stomachaches, blackouts and hangovers. The final stages of alcoholism are characterized with fully obsession. At this stage the existence of problem is very noticeable as physical and mental health of an alcoholic starts deteriorating at an alarming rate. Moreover, most of the organs get damaged and enable a resistance to other diseases (Neill n.pag.).
Comparison between an Alcoholic and a Non-Alcoholic
An alcoholic usually drinks regularly, while a non-alcoholic drinks very rarely and no so much compared to alcoholics, who cannot usually control themselves while drinking. Alcoholics are likely to be irritated without any evident reasons. Furthermore, an alcoholic finds managing his duties (in the workplace or at home) difficult. Often absence and tardiness can even lead to a loss of job. All these things rarely happen to a non-alcoholic, who can also stop drinking any moment (Neill n.pag.).
In conclusion, there are a number of reasons which lead to alcoholism; these may either refer to psychological or physiological problems. As a result, self-motivation, family support and acceptance of the problem of alcoholism are some of the principal recovery avenues. Cure of alcoholism is a long term and costly process which requires much efforts and patience; however, in most cases it is not very effective, as many chronic alcoholics resist any attempt of their relatives to help them get rid of this devastating addiction.