Yes. Alcohol is a drug. There is no way around it. As the most widely used and accepted drug, alcohol has wreaked havoc on millions of families. People from all different socio-economic backgrounds, races, genders, and ages use and abuse this drug. A boy starting his teens is just as likely to abuse this drug as a mother watching her daughter marry. Laws restricting sales do not protect anyone from alcohol’s destruction. We hear daily about car wrecks, firework incidents, or simple forgetfulness that cause heartaches in our communities. Alcohol affects us more powerfully than we may think. In fact, more than a third of Americans in prison admit they were under the influence of alcohol at the time of their crime.
Is alcohol a drug? Yes. Yes. Yes!
There is a medical explanation behind this as well. Alcohol is a drug that alters your mood. It changes how you think, feel, and even behave because alcohol affects all neural pathways. People under the influence make poor decisions, can’t think clearly, don’t remember very well, have bad coordination, and their emotions are all over the place! The alcohol in your body changes how your nerves react to a situation. This is why people use alcohol to loosen up at a party, to relax after a stressful day, or to calm the nerves. But what is happening when someone begins to rely on alcohol to loosen up, relax, or calm down?
Regular or heavy alcohol use, or drinking when the brain is still developing, causes real damage to the nerves. The pathways break-down. The shakes. Mood swings, Nausea. Anxiety. Sweating. These symptoms of alcoholism are the result of alcohol damaging the nerves. Drinking more alcohol numbs the symptoms, but not without increased black-outs, worsened coordination, foggy thinking, and irrational emotions. People with alcoholism are dependent on alcohol. That doesn’t mean they want to drink or that they like to drink. Most actually hate themselves for drinking alcohol.
Quitting cold turkey is not an option. Depriving a body dependent on alcohol causes severe reactions. People going through unassisted detox experience extreme nausea, insomnia, convulsions, shakiness, hallucinations, and even heart failure and seizures. These painful symptoms happen because the nerves are reacting to the lack of alcohol in the system. The body is in shock. Many return to the drug to stop the pain.
So what is someone with alcoholism to do? They can’t live with alcohol anymore, but they’ll die without it.
Alcohol is a drug. Seek treatment for drug addiction. Alcoholism is a form of chemical dependency, a medical disease. Medical professionals will help you detox safely. Counselors will guide you through the process, and into your new life. Surround yourself with a community that understands your struggle and give you insight into living a sober life. The millions who have gone through rehab know that sobriety isn’t easy, but they each emerged with a renewed outlook on life.
Alcohol is a drug, and you can live your life without alcohol. Call us. We will help you down the path. There is hope ahead.