AlcoholismNature Or Nuture Essay Research Paper INTRODUCTION — страница 3

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continued use that can lead to the increasing of tolerance and dependence. People who were once social drinkers have transitioned to abusive drinking because the effects of alcohol on them are better than the experiences of other activities going on in their life. An example of this is one who experiences the painful reality of a death in their family may find the experience too difficult to deal with, and the feeling produced by alcohol assists in the coping process. Some drinkers report that alcohol helps them reduce anxiety allowing them to face things that they may fear such as meeting people to flying in an airplane. Stressful life events such as divorce and job loss have led to increased use of alcohol. The stress is relieved through increased drinking. But experimental

studies fail to show that increased tension leads to increased drinking. If people drink alcohol to reduce stress and tension then one would expect that drinking alcohol would increase during tension/stress arousing situations. Yet another study suggests that people do not drink alcohol to reduce tensions. They drink once the tense situation is over or has stopped and relief has set in. It is the removal of stress that leads to drinking not the actual stressful situation. PHYSCHOSOCIAL: When people drink to the point of intoxication they exhibit feelings of superiority and fearless behavior. Experiments have shown those males exhibit higher levels of aggression than do females. The aggressive behavior starts in the adolescent stages of life and may continue into adulthood. Where

does the aggressiveness originate? Part of the explanation is that children who are sociable and spontaneous exhibit more aggressive behavior than those who do not. Surprisingly, common traits amongst these children are being first born, having a stable family life and a shy temperament. More current, up to date explanation state that aggression is learned response to frustration and by observing others who exhibit the same aggressive behavior. Males also are at greater risk for developing criminal behavior. Criminal behavior has been linked to alcohol abuse. Studies have concluded that alcohol abuse precedes criminal behavior. Criminal behavior for most youths appears to peak between the ages of 15 to 17, about the same time that their usage of alcohol is on the rise. However

only a small percentage (2 to 6) of these people engage in criminal activity into adulthood. Clinicians have addressed the possibility that physical and sexual abuse may be associated with incidents of later alcohol abuse. Sixty to eighty percent of individuals in substance abuse treatment programs reported having been sexually abused. Abused women were about 10 times more likely than non-abused women were to report a history of drug abuse and more than twice as likely to report a history of alcoholism. Uncovering the memories of early childhood experiences is thought to be a contributing factor in alcohol use. The question should not be whether physical and sexual abuse “causes” the later use of alcohol. Many factors contribute, especially in the home, school, and peer

settings of children as they grow up. However, the consistent finding of higher levels of physical and sexual abuse among alcohol abusers should warrant further research. PHYSIOLOGICAL: Underlying all alcohol abuse and addiction are the actions that alcohol abuse exerts. A question that is important in understanding alcohol abuse is how alcohol affects the brain, and why alcohol has a potential for being abused. The two biological factors that contribute to alcohol abuse are the effects that alcohol abuse has on a person and the biological status of the individual using alcohol. The first relates to the action of alcohol has on the brain and the latter relates to the inherited characteristics that affect a person’s response to alcohol. In order for alcohol to affect a person it

first must reach the brain. This is accomplished by alcohol entering the circulatory system, then on to the brain. The amount of alcohol that enters the bloodstream affects how quickly the alcohol will penetrate to the brain. Alcohol is taken in orally; therefore the stomach, which results in a delay before the affects become apparent, absorbs it. This is exhibited if you have ever seen someone ingest alcohol while sitting down he or she seems to be okay. Yet when they stand up, they all of a sudden become dizzy and experience high levels of intoxication. Alcohol produces feelings of pleasure to the brain. There is increasing evidence that the ‘pleasure feelings’ are linked to the brain’s reward system. In the absence of any goal-seeking behavior, stimulation to the