Understanding Alcohol Addiction and Private Treatment
People primarily use drugs because they make the users feel good. Drugs release chemicals called endorphins inside the body to make the body feel pleasure. According to research from the University of California at San Francisco, endorphins are small proteins that are naturally created in the brain. They produce effects similar to those of opioids. The body likes this effect and wants the user to continue with the habit. The body eventually tolerates the drug, to the point where the body no longer produces endorphins on its own. It becomes dependent on the drug in order to function in everyday life.
This is also true for alcohol. According to WebMD, scientists have done numerous studies to determine why alcohol is addictive. The study proved that alcohol primarily affects the reward center of the brain. When a person drinks, the endorphins are released. The more a person drinks, the more endorphins are released, according to the study. The more endorphins that are released, the more pleasure a person receives from drinking alcohol. This means that in order to get the most effect, a person may continually drink too much and become an alcoholic.
The Disease of Alcoholism
According to the same study published on WebMD, researchers have concluded that alcoholism is not just one disease. It is a combination of various diseases affecting various parts of the brain. The orbitofrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens are two parts of the brain that researchers have been able to identify as affected by alcohol consumption. It is believed that there are more parts of the brain affected.
According to research from the University of California at San Francisco, alcohol changes a person’s brain structure, allowing a person to feel pleasure from alcohol. Radioactive images were taken before and after alcohol consumption and the images allowed researchers to identify areas of endorphin release throughout the brain through lit-up areas.
The research hopes to find other ways of treating alcohol abuse. The results of the study may be able to create new and better medications to treat alcoholism. One current drug, naltrexone, is effective at preventing binding at opioid sites in the brain, but it comes with very unpleasant side effects which prompts users to stop taking the drug. Scientists are attempting to determine which action reduces drinking and apply that toward more advanced treatment medications that specifically target alcoholism and the effects of endorphins on alcohol use.
Social Risks of Alcoholism
Most people know that alcohol can cause serious damage to one’s health. Alcohol can cause damage in other ways as well. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, here are some ways how:
- Risky behavior
- Accidents such as car crashes
- Homicide and suicide
Finding Treatment for Alcohol Addiction
Although Alcoholics Anonymous is one of the most popular method for treating alcoholism, there are many others and they are not limited to support groups. Behavioral strategies and medications may also be used. Researchers are continuing to develop more treatment options as well.
Need help determining which alcohol rehab services are best for your alcohol addiction? Give us a call for help. You don’t have to go at it alone. We can locate various recovery options in your area. We can help you decide whether to enter a private inpatient or outpatient rehab. Call us today to get started. Recovery from alcohol abuse is within reach.