Alcohol Dependency Essay

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Alcohol Dependency

Dependence is defined as a cluster of three or more existing criteria according to the DSM-IV for alcohol dependency over a period of 12 months. According to Riley, substance abuse is commonly referred to as an addiction. These terms are often used interchangeably. Dependency occurs over time and is usually taken in excessive quantities causing harm to the individual (Riley, 1998). There is no known cause for alcohol dependency. However, there are contributing factors to the etiology of alcohol dependence. These factors are age, gender, cultural differences, depression, and schizoid personality traits. The DSM-IV states, “low educational level, unemployment, and lower socioeconomic status are
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The enzyme acetaldehyde accumulates in the blood with any consumption of alcohol. Most treatments involve the use of Disulfiram, also known as Antabuse. It is an inhibitor of the enzyme aldehyde dehydrogenase which with a single drink causes a toxic reaction. This drug should not be administered until 24 hours after the individual’s last drink. Several side affects could occur if one ingests alcohol while being treated with
Antabuse. Physicians should caution patients of affects. According to Kaplan and
Sadock, this drug can increase psychotic symptoms in some patients with schizophrenia in the absence of alcohol. The drug Naltrexone aids in decreasing one’s craving for alcohol. The recommended dosage for this drug is one dose daily. Its primary goal is to promote abstinence by preventing relapses and decrease alcohol consumption in individuals (Kaplan & Sadock, 1998). Anti-anxiety agents and antidepressants have been used as treatments for those symptoms associated with alcohol. However, there is rising attention to the use of psycho active drugs in order to control alcohol cravings
(Kaplan & Sadock, 1998). Alcohol related disorders, such as, alcohol dependency can be accompanied by a number of other disorders: mood disorder, anxiety disorder, sexual dysfunction and sleep disorder which are all alcohol induced. According to Kaplan and
Sadock, Lithium has shown to reduce mood cycles
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