Alcohol Abuse New Haven, CT
Alcohol abuse takes its toll in many ways on multiple lives in New Haven every day. The city estimates that 571 people will be arrested for driving while intoxicated, six people will die in an alcohol related motor vehicle accident and the lives of 34 people will be lost due to alcohol abuse. While these are just estimations, these expected statistics paint a picture of the threat of alcohol abuse on the lives and wellbeing of residents in New Haven.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) defines alcohol abuse as the recurring use and overconsumption of alcohol even when negative consequences threaten the safety and well-being of all. Alcohol is an intoxicating substance that has a depressing effect on the central nervous system. Once consumed through beer, wine or liquor, it is absorbed quickly from the stomach into the bloodstream. NIAAA data explains that a standard drink that contains 0.6 ounces of pure ethanol is equal to twelve ounces of beer; eight ounces of malt liquor; five ounces of wine or a 1.5 ounces of rum, vodka or whiskey in a shot glass.
Alcohol Use Disorders
Various forms of problem drinking that becomes severe is diagnosed as alcohol use disorder. For instance, regular binge drinking, alcohol dependence and alcoholism, all fall under this definition. According to the NIAAA, there are at least seventeen million adults in the United States ages 18 and older with an alcohol use disorder. This includes 11.2 million men and 5.7 million women. Adolescents can be diagnosed with an AUD as well, and in 2012, an estimated 855,000 adolescents ages 12–17 had an AUD.
People who meet the criteria for having an alcohol use disorder experience two or more of the following situations within the same twelve month period.
- There are occasions when you drink more, or longer than you intended.
- You have made more than one attempt to reduce the amount of alcohol you drink but couldn't.
- You spend a lot of time drinking, being sick or getting over the aftereffects of drinking.
- Have experienced craving which is a strong need, or urge, to drink?
- Drinking or being sick from drinking often interferes with daily responsibilities such as caring for home, family, going to work or school.
- You continue to drink despite its negative impact on your relationships and lifestyle.
- Drinking has changed your life in various ways such as caused you to give up activities that you formerly enjoyed.
- You have put yourself and others at risk while intoxicated on more than one occasion such as driving, swimming, engaging in unprotected sex, getting into arguments, going into an unsafe environment or using potentially dangerous machinery.
- You have continued to drink despite the fact that you know it is having a psychological effect on you such as mood swings, depression, and anxiety or have had memory blackouts.
- Your alcohol consumption is increasing to get the effect you want.
- When you stop drinking you experience the discomfort of withdrawal symptoms which may include nausea, sweating, shakiness, irritability, insomnia, anxiety, depression or paranoia to name a few.
Whether you have just started experiencing problems with alcohol or have been struggling for a long time, you can benefit from treatment. Unfortunately, most people wait until alcohol abuse has caused them serious and at times irreversible damage before seeking help.