Essay on Women: Alcohol Addiction

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The alcoholic beverage has remained an established element to society’s social world and has grown into a way of living. As alcohol continues to flourish in its prevalence among citizens of the United States, so does the concept of alcohol addiction. A person becomes addicted to alcohol when they “drink excessively and develops a dependence that results in noticeable mental disturbance, or an interference with bodily and mental health, their interpersonal relations, and their smooth social and economic functioning” (Calahan, 1970, pp. 3). In 2009, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that about 52% of Americans used alcohol at least once within 30 days of their survey. As the percentage of Americans who consume alcohol…show more content…
3) but when it becomes an addiction, society is left to view it as a disease rather than a problem. As compared to men, women of alcohol addiction are diagnosed with medical problems such as depression, cirrhosis, stroke, and brain damage partly because of gender differences (Holdcraft & Iacono, 2002). A woman’s body is generally smaller and contains a higher proportion of fat to water leaving alcohol much more concentrated in the body (McConville, 1983). According to Holdcraft and Iacono (2002), not only do women have higher blood alcohol concentration but also they are highly vulnerable to the physical effects that alcohol can cause. Aside from the previously mentioned medical diagnoses, alcohol can affect the women physically by changing her ovulation and menstruation, which can ultimately affect pregnancy. Along with gender differences, other factors that influence the addiction of alcohol amongst women include genetics, neuropsychology, and environment. The environmental factor plays a big role in alcohol addiction amongst women, especially in the family context. Holdcraft and Iacono wrote in an article, “Women have been found to have more drinking-related familial consequences while men suffer more adverse social, occupational, legal and violence-related consequences” (pp. 1026). Women of alcohol addiction have developed this disease more than not through some type of influence by family.

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