How does alcoholism affect society? Well, the social effects of alcoholism can influence more than just the person struggling, it can also affect that person’s loved ones. Annually, 95,000 Americans die from the effects of alcohol use.
This can present devastating outcomes for all involved, especially those watching the people that they deeply care about unable to cope. The use of alcohol is ancient; remaining as a bedrock for social events and Super Bowl advertising. The global pandemic has played a role in the increase of alcohol use, considering the widespread uncertainty and isolation.
Addiction is a relentless disease, but there are treatment options for those willing to embark on sobriety. Relapse is a common denominator for addiction recovery. It’s crucial to develop a plan to maintain sobriety, as it is a lifelong marathon.
Table of Contents
- What are the Signs of Alcohol Use Disorder?
- How Does Alcoholism Affect Society, as a Whole?
- How Does Alcoholism Affect Society, My Family, and Work-Life?
- How Does Alcoholism in the U.S. Affect Overall Population Health?
- What Can Someone Do If They Need Help with Alcoholism?
- Live Freely Through Recovery
What are the Signs of Alcohol Use Disorder?
7% of adults who drink have an alcohol use disorder. People describe alcohol use disorder as the inability to stop drinking alcohol despite the variety of consequences, from financial and physical. Alcohol use disorders can present themselves in mild, moderate, and severe cases.
Alcohol is one of the most popular social drinks, but it is recognized for its role in polydrug use. It is a central nervous system depressant that delays the responses in the body in combination with feelings of ease.
Signs of an alcohol use disorder may include:
- Feeling the need to cut down on consumption but being unable to
- Spending more time or money on drinking
- Increased time spent recovering from drinking
- Continued drinking despite interpersonal relationship issues
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms after use stopped
- Binge Drinking (Drinking more than 3-5 glasses in a single sitting)
- Blackouts or loss of consciousness
- Drinking to cope with mental health issues
Alcohol paired with other substances such as opioids and stimulants could have a tremendous impact on the internal systems. Alcohol misuse with these substances can increase your risk of fatal overdose.
A variety of factors can inspire alcohol use disorders. These include the following:
- Environmental background
- Socioeconomic background
How Does Alcoholism Affect Society, as a Whole?
How does alcoholism affect society, you ask? Well, according to the CDC, alcohol misuse, related incidents cost the United States roughly over $200 billion annually. An estimated $28 billion is attributed to alcohol-related healthcare. In addition, federal, state, and local government pays for approximately 40% of alcohol misuse.
These range from:
- Crime and Law Enforcement
- Motor vehicle crashes
Alcohol misuse can contribute to certain health risks such as heart disease and depression. Alcohol is known for its euphoric and bubbly sensation in users. However, alcohol contributes to aggression and cases of violence. The social effects of alcoholism bleed into the lives of those who only wish for safety.
Alcohol misuse plays a role in unintentional injuries and accidents. Alcohol-related proceedings cost the criminal justice system approximately $25 billion. The World Health Organization recognizes the social effect of alcoholism globally, with education as a priority to reduce the harmful use of alcohol.
This would include raising the taxes on alcoholic beverages, enforcing bans on alcohol advertising across mediums, and even enforcing bans on retailed alcohol. With widespread awareness of the effect of alcohol misuse, there could be a fighting chance towards prevention. The health and financial burden of alcoholism illustrate how does alcoholism affect society.
What Does it Cost Society in Production Value?
To evaluate the true metrics, the market for alcoholic beverages is structured into retail sales for at-home consumption and on-premise, or foodservice sales for out-of-home consumption. Both are valued at retail selling prices, including all sales and consumption tax.
According to Statista, in 2020, the global market size for alcoholic beverages reached over 1.49 trillion US dollars. The social effect of alcoholism has adapted — It’s estimated that the market will fully recover by 2022, despite a drop in 2021.
By volume, people consume beer the most, with an average alcohol % of 5. Breweries contribute to a tremendous output of revenue.
Globally, people consume approximately 446 billion liters of beer, wine, and spirits each year. 46% of alcohol consumption is from beer. US consumers consume vodka the most — with 76 million liters of vodka consumed annually. The most popular brand of vodka that Americans consume is Smirnoff.
By year, red wines composed 23% of all wine Americans drank. Sutter Home is the most consumed brand of wine in the US, followed by Woodbridge, and Franzia. Barefoot leads the wine industry with a revenue of approximately $669 million.
How Does Alcoholism Affect Society, My Family, and Work-Life?
The social effects of alcoholism will directly influence your family and work-life. Alcoholism can make it difficult to maintain relationships and function at healthy levels. The risk factors of interacting with others while under the influence can bring harm, uncomfortable confrontations, and potentially fatal accidents.
The financial costs of alcoholism can endanger the well-being of the family. The social stigma of addiction can produce intense feelings of shame and disconnect. The family unit is precious and dealing with the emotional turmoil of alcoholism could drive negative interactions.
Some family members may be confused as to why someone can’t stop drinking for his or her own sake, despite the complicated factors behind the root cause. Alcoholism can affect the development of children in the home. The stress and chaos of their home lives impact learning outcomes and social development. Children affected by alcoholism might find maladaptive ways to cope with stressful circumstances.
Fetal alcohol syndrome can occur in infants born from pregnant mothers who consumed excessive alcohol. The infant will begin to experience withdrawal-like symptoms, which can affect the child’s brain along with the central nervous system.
As a disease, addiction spreads from one person to those around them, further demonstrating how does alcoholism affect society. It’s important to note that a person may be using alcohol as a means to cope or their home environment had alcohol misuse present. Adolescent and young adult use of alcohol typically begin with experimentation or a way to blend in with peers.
Unfortunately, alcohol misuse and domestic violence are attached by the hip. This is evident by the fact that many domestic violence victims report that alcohol had a role in their domestic fights. It’s inconclusive that alcohol creates violent interactions though despite the consistency of domestic violence perpetrators drinking habitually.
How Does Alcoholism in the U.S. Affect Overall Population Health?
261 Americans die every day due to alcohol misuse. Studies show that alcohol causes 10% of the deaths among 15 – 49-year-olds. 3.3 million people die from alcohol-related causes each year globally. For Americans, they lose over 2.7 million years of potential life due to excessive alcohol use.
The Covid-19 pandemic had affected many elements of the substance use industry and profits with online liquor sales skyrocketing to 262% YoY (Year over Year) within the first 3 weeks of March 2020.
If you ever wonder how does alcoholism affect society, then you should understand alcohol availability and boredom added to the increasing trends of use. Managing stress is a common risk factor for developing addiction, especially for alcohol. Surprisingly, nations, where alcohol is illegal, saw similar trends.
Suicide involving alcohol cause more death than car accidents related to alcohol misuse. Roughly 22.5% of acute-alcohol-related deaths are due to suicide, with alcohol poisoning causing 32% of alcohol-related deaths.
What Can Someone Do If They Need Help with Alcoholism?
If someone you know is combatting an alcohol use disorder, then it would be best to stage an intervention. An intervention is the first step to address the issue in hopes that the person receives some form of addiction treatment.
If you’ve decided to enter addiction treatment, it would be wise to research the facility you are admitted into. Contact your insurance provider to determine what your payment options are, along with the representatives or counselors.
Chances are you’ll be encouraged to detox from alcohol before addiction treatment is provided. Depending on the severity of your case, the amount used to drink, frequency of use, and family history, detox can last up to 10 days.
Inpatient treatment programs for addiction can offer a distraction-free environment to heal. These programs provide individuals with 24/7 care as they push through detoxification after evaluation. Doctors can administer medications to individuals to treat the bevy of their withdrawal symptoms during detox and inpatient treatment.
A patient can expect to stay at an inpatient residence for 30-90 days, depending on the severity. It’s important to be transparent about your alcohol use so that the trained medical staff can nurture your transition.
Outpatient treatment programs are designed to be more flexible yet structured. These types of programs are carried through a residence or facility, where you’re expected to participate in the treatment schedules.
Individual and group therapy sessions are common tools to discover the reasons behind your addiction. Additional therapies such as holistic addiction treatment can be complementary to this process. Expect to spend about 30 days in an outpatient treatment program.
Aftercare treatment is for after the main addiction treatment program has been completed. Addiction treatment that is aftercare includes support group meetings and sober living. Sober living homes are also available, which are havens for you to work and remain in the addiction recovery community.
It’s important to develop relationships with those on the same path. You gain plenty of insights into what it means to have this disorder and ways to approach your personalized recovery. Support group meetings are specialized by the substance or behavior. Alcoholics Anonymous promote the 12-Step Program as the guideline for alcohol use recovery.
It’s been reported that those who remain in some form in the continuum of care for recovery have higher chances of remaining sober. Sobriety requires a bundle of patience and determination to stay motivated for this new lifestyle.
Live Freely Through Recovery
AUDs are a growing issue in the US. Alcohol-related accidents are the leading cause of death among teens and young adults. Addressing the topic of addiction can be challenging, especially if the person denies treatment. Live Free Recovery is dedicated to being the support you need during this difficult period. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, feel free to contact us today.