Alcoholism: Moral issue or Malady
We see every day in our law courts our hospitals and our mortuaries -the results of alcohol abuse.The victims of alcohol abuse come from right across the spectrum of society. It is not selective. All walks of life are affected;
etc etc ......... ad infinitum......... You name it. They are all there.
Some societies totally forbid the consumption of alcohol. One might imagine that this type of rigid control would be effective.
Far from it. Alcohol abuse is prevalent in those societies and strict laws to prevent the consumption of alcohol are quite ineffective.
This is a fact in spite of huge sums of money and efforts spent by public bodies and law enforcement agencies.
The problem does not go away or diminish. In fact the consumption of alcohol is ever increasing and the number of people that become dependent upon it is increasing proportionately.
Statistics show that out of every 100 people that drink alcohol on a regular basis,about 12 of these regular drinkers, at sometime during their lives, become dependent upon it.
When this happens, alcohol begins to cost the individual and society more than money. These people have lost the tolerance to alcohol they may have once had. Their bodies have now become allergic to the intake of alcohol.
Their minds become obsessed with the thought of alcohol. They will go to extreme lengths to convince others that they do not have a problem with it.
They will hide their booze and lie about the amount they are consuming.
These same people begin to lose friends, time at work, respect of others and eventually self respect.
They will often reject the advice of friends and family that they ought to drink less.
They will drink secretively because inside they know they are drinking too much.
They will stop drinking just to show everyone they don’t have a problem.
But, they cannot stop for any length of time. When they do make a supreme effort to control their drinking it usually lasts just a while.
The family begins to get hope and this is soon dashed when the victim takes a few drinks and is back on the same old merry go round.
They try again and again to drink like others but they cannot. They have lost all power to control their drinking.
These people are often described as alcoholics.
Now let’s get to the point of the topic; is alcoholism an illness- a malady- a disease, or is it a moral issue?
Let’s briefly examine some realities.
As far back as 1951, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recognised alcoholism as a disease.
Following this, in 1957, the American Medical Association (AMA) declared alcoholism as a treatable illness.
Unfortunately, even today in 2014, many people do not accept alcoholism as a disease. This includes some medical doctors. Although their own professional organisations recognise alcoholism as a disease there are some, as individuals, that do not or will not.
They prefer to see alcoholism as a moral issue, and this is especially true in certain countries and certain cultures.
In a 1992 JAMA article, the Joint Committee of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence and the American Society of Addiction Medicine published this definition for alcoholism:
"Alcoholism is a primary chronic disease with genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. It is characterized by impaired control over drinking, preoccupation with the drug alcohol, use of alcohol despite adverse consequences, and distortions in thinking, mostly denial. Each of these symptoms may be continuous or periodic."
With all this professional input on alcoholism surely the most obstinate amongst us cannot deny the possibility that these people may at least in part have merits for the concept that alcoholism is a disease rather than a moral issue.
And if we did at least keep an open mind, might not society be better equipped to squarely deal with it and all its ramifications?
When I speak of ramifications, I am not just talking about the estimated annual 115 billion dollars to the American economy alone. Other countries across the globe are spending vast sums of money they can ill afford.
When we consider other costs to society,I am not just talking about the “wet brains” in our societies that need to be kept under lock and key.
I am not just talking about lunatic driving we all see on the roads here in Kuwait and elsewhere that is caused through alcohol abuse or other mind altering substances.
I am also talking about the families, the friends, the employers of those alcoholics.
These all suffer as the result of the alcoholic in one way or another.
But in spite of all this, there is a Ray of Hope.
There are in fact over 2 million RECOVERING alcoholics in the world at this present time.
They are living useful and productive lives without alcohol.
They are using the most successful recovery programme known to mankind.
How do I know this?
The simple and honest answer is that I am one of these people.
I’ll not go into a lengthy dialogue of how my life is today. Suffice to say I have not taken any alcohol in any shape or form for a number of years.
That does not meant to say I am now cured of my disease. My disease is still with me, for there is no known cure.
However, there is a way to arrest the disease and the method is simple and totally FREE to ANY person who WANTS to try to stay away from one drink for one day at a time
I underline the word WANT. I did not use the word NEED.
I know from experience that unless a person is WILLING to try this method then there is little chance of recovery.
It is heartbreaking to see families torn apart because of alcoholism.
But, there is a solution if the person who is drinking too much wants to do something about it.
If there is anyone reading this article who would like to know more about this FREE treatment, please contact;-. firstname.lastname@example.org
It will cost you nothing and may save your life or indeed return your life to YOU. Your call will be treated with total confidentiality.
And please remember. We do not oppose or endorse the consumption of alcohol.
We believe it is for the individual to choose.
But if someone tries to stop drinking and discovers they are unable to, then that is the point where we may be able to help them.
A Prisoner of your Past? The Truth Will Set You Free