Gooden Center
A residential drug treatment center for men located in Pasadena, CA. The Gooden Center is a proud member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

(626) 356-0078
191 North El Molino Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101 US

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Posts Tagged ‘alcohol abuse’

How Anxiety and Alcohol are Linked

Posted on: August 14th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

How Anxiety and Alcohol are Linked

 

People often associate alcohol with a feeling of relaxation, especially when it is used in a social setting or to unwind after work. However, that association can often become problematic especially for people that suffer from anxiety. There is a strong connection between chronic alcohol abuse and anxiety for many people in the U.S.

 

The tendency for people to drink in order to relax and celebrate can lead to the misconception that alcohol is a good cure for anxiety. People that feel anxious in social situations might end up drinking more or those who are unable to handle their stress might drink whenever they are tense. However, alcohol only provides short-term temporary relief from anxiety and over time can actually worsen anxious feelings when consumed regularly. 

 

People with anxiety often feel restless, have difficulty focusing, experience a lot of muscle tension and have trouble sleeping. Alcohol can initially make them feel more relaxed  because it has a sedative effect but developing a tolerance and going through withdrawal can lead to very severe symptoms of anxiety and depression. In many cases, frequent alcohol abuse can actually lead to an anxiety disorder.

 

Issues like social anxiety disorder, panic disorder and other anxiety illnesses are commonly linked with alcohol abuse. About 20 percent of people with social anxiety disorder suffer from some type of alcohol dependence. People with social anxiety use alcohol as a way to feel more comfortable in social situations but studies show that alcohol can increase anxiety within just a few hours of consuming it. 

 

People with anxiety are more vulnerable to alcohol problems and people that drink are more susceptible to the development of anxiety. Those with co-occurring disorders will need to get treatment for both their anxiety and addiction in order to recover their mental health.

 

References

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/common-comorbidities-substance-use-disorders/why-there-comorbidity-between-substance-use-disorders-mental-illnesses

Change Your Relationship with Alcohol

Posted on: February 22nd, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Changing Relationship Alcohol

For many Americans, drinking alcohol has become a part of daily life. People drink after work, on the weekends, during holidays and celebrations. Therefore changing drinking patterns requires changing some aspects in a persons lifestyle. However, making these adjustments with your relationship to alcohol can change your life for the better and transform your health.

There are many reasons that alcohol can have negative consequences on your life even if you don’t drink regularly and wouldn’t consider yourself addicted. Alcohol takes its toll on the body and causes changes in the brain. It can lead to mood changes, depression, anxiety and a number of physical health issues.

The relationship that people have with alcohol can be harmful to their well-being too especially if they are mentally dependent on it. They may start to believe that they can’t have a good time, relax after work or feel comfortable socializing without having some drinks. That dependent relationship with alcohol can make you feel powerless and too focused on the act of drinking rather than experiencing life as it is.

Changing your relationship with alcohol means learning to find other ways to have fun and feel calm and relaxed that are healthier for your mind and body. Instead of seeing alcohol as the only means to achieve a certain state of mind, you can explore other options that will not have the same negative consequences. When you cut down or completely quit drinking you can discover the other things that life has to offer without relying on alcohol to fulfill your needs.

Without alcohol you can enjoy better physical and mental health, more freedom and a more positive perspective. Drinking can limit you in ways that you don’t realize until you rid yourself of a dependency on alcohol.

Alcohol Induced Cirrhosis

Posted on: January 28th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Alcohol Induced Cirrhosis

Alcohol abuse is something that not only takes its toll on someone’s personal life but it can also cause very serious damage to the body. Alcohol is a dangerous toxin that, when consumed in large amounts over a period of many years, can lead to physical health problems. The liver is one of the areas of the body that is most damaged by alcohol and many alcoholics even develop cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis is a liver disease that is most often linked with alcohol abuse and the effect that drinking has on the liver. The liver’s job in the body is to filter out toxins, break down proteins, and create bile to help absorb body fat. Heavy alcohol consumption taxes the liver and starts to replace healthy tissue with scar tissue resulting in cirrhosis.

Over time and with continued alcohol abuse, cirrhosis can cause the liver to stop functioning properly due to the increasing scar tissue. Cirrhosis typically develops when the person is between the ages of 30 and 40 as they start exhibiting symptoms such as jaundice or yellowing of the skin, hypertension resulting in increased blood pressure, and skin itching. An alcoholic will start to develop cirrhosis after drinking heavily for about eight years or so.

Cirrhosis can lead to complications such as a buildup of fluid in the stomach, encephalopathy or mental confusion, internal bleeding and other problems. Although cirrhosis cannot be completely reversed, the progress of the disease can be slowed so that some of the more severe symptoms don’t appear. The first step in treating cirrhosis is for the individual to stop drinking alcohol and detoxify their body from their dependency.

Some types of medication and better nutrition can improve some of the symptoms of cirrhosis but the most important thing is to stay sober permanently for better health.

Are All Alcoholics Impulsive?

Posted on: December 30th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Alcoholics Impulsive

Everyone who develops alcoholism has their own circumstances, personal history and other factors that caused their substance abuse problem. However, there are certain traits that many people with addictions tend to share such as the tendency to act impulsively. For alcoholics, impulsivity is one of the classic characteristics of people susceptible to dependency.

It is important for alcoholics to be aware of their impulsive nature, especially when they are in recovery and need to be vigilant about preventing a relapse. Alcoholism and impulsive behaviors have almost always been linked and many studies have found that the risk for both issues are connected. People that are impulsive are often seeking novelty or new sensations which can also lead to alcohol abuse.

In a sense, alcoholism itself is a type of impulse control issue that can never fully be resolved except by removing the substance from the person’s life. People with impulse control issues tend to act self-destructively and engage in harmful behavior that impairs their functioning. Alcoholics behave the same way but much of their impulsive and harmful actions center around alcohol.

Studies have revealed that alcoholics have an imbalance of certain neurotransmitters in the brain which can cause impulsive behavior. Alcohol use can actually increase the effects of the neurotransmitters that cause impulsivity. Many alcoholics already have impulsive behavior due to their brain structure and drinking only increases those tendencies.

This is one of the reasons why alcoholics can only recover if they remain completely abstinent from any alcohol use. Their impulsive nature may always be present to a certain extent but they can learn to channel it and avoid using alcohol as an outlet for their compulsions. Sobriety can also help decrease impulsivity and make it easier for alcoholics to moderate their behavior as much as possible.

Alcohol Increases Effects of Cigarettes

Posted on: December 13th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Alcohol Increases Cigarettes Effects

People that drink alcohol regularly often also smoke cigarettes when they are out drinking. It is also very common for alcoholics to also struggle with cigarette addiction simultaneously. Why are the two problems so closely connected?

One of the reasons that people smoke when they drink, whether they are aware of it or not, is that nicotine helps offset that sedative effects of alcohol. The body may be seeking something to counteract the slow reaction times and other issues that go along with consuming alcohol. Another possible cause is that alcohol actually increases the rewarding effects of nicotine when the two substances are consumed together.

Studies have shown that when compared to a placebo drink, alcohol tended to enhance the pleasure and calming effect of cigarettes with nicotine. Even a fairly low dose of alcohol can elicit these effects, according to the study, which explains why people who drink have a very hard time quitting smoking. The interaction of the two drugs makes it very common for people in alcohol recovery to continue being addicted to cigarettes for some time.

Because cigarettes combat some of the effects of alcohol and alcohol in turn increases the effects of nicotine, people make a strong association with both drug habits. Alcoholics in recovery who still smoke may feel a stronger craving for alcohol when they have a cigarette. Someone who has quit smoking may relapse and smoke a cigarettes if they have had a few drinks.

For optimal health and to avoid the drug habits influencing one another, it can be beneficial to quit both smoking and alcohol at the same time. Both alcohol and cigarettes are toxins that cause cravings for one another and affect recovery. Quitting both can be challenging but it will create a faster path to sobriety and increased wellness.