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Alcohol abuse

Many of us have an uncle, grandfather or other friends that reached an advanced age despite the fact that they had drunk excessively. Howere, they are only few exceptions due to the fact that the human body is a wonderful complex mechanism with an outstanding capacity to adjust. That's the reason why some people can tolerate high amounts of alcohol better than others without displaying noticeable symptoms. Nevertheless, excessive drinking does cause damages.

The border between a normal and an abusive drinking is not well defined by the society and, for the majority, this border is rather based on the risks of health problems caused by alcohol, not on thier atitude towards the alcohol.

There are 2 different types of abusive drinkers:

- habitual drinker, is a person that (1) drinks frequently to feel comfortable, (2) usually stands out due to an advanced stage of intoxication, and (3) develops serious medical condition;

- intentional drinker, is a person that (1) drinks deliberately and usually has difficulties stopping once they started, and (2) uses alcohol to cope with personal conflicts, crises, and inferiority complexes.

We talk about an abusive drinking when people drink:

  • in improper circumstances (such as driving the car, at the office, during physical activities, when pregnant);
  • until they get drunk;
  • until they numb a bad mood (when upset);
  • long term drinking of high amounts of alcohol (for males - over 40 grams, for females - over 20 grams pure alcohol/day).

Several studies suggest that an avarage alcohol amount of 60 grams (pure alcohol) per day over the years causes hepatic lesions in men. Also, 20 grams of pure alcohol per day increases the risk of hepatic disorders in women.

Even a daily dose of 40 grams represents increases the risk for brain problems.

For a better understanding, I've posted below an alcoholic beverages chart that explains the alcohol amount contained by the most popular alcoholic drinks available on the market.

Range of drinks Alcohol contents [percentages] Volume
Pure alcohol
Beer ca.5 % vol 0,5 l 20÷25 g
Wine ca.10 % vol 0,125 l 10÷13 g
Sparkling wine ca.12 % vol 0,1 l 12 g
Liquor 30 % vol 0,05 l 15 g
White schnapps 25 % vol 0,05 l 12,5 g
Vodka, Rum 33 % vol 0,05 l 17 g
Brandy of plums, Whisky 45 % vol 0,05 l 22,5 g

According to several studies, the human body can eliminate 7÷10 grams of pure alcohol in one hour.

According to the alcohol legislation (in Romania), the label of each alcoholic beverage needs to mention the amount of alcohol contained.

Alcohol is an ingredient that can be present in small or high amount (up to 70-80%) in several drugs such cough syrup, sleeping pills, mouth wash, etc.,

According to the facts presented above, most of us can take in an excessive amount of alcohol in certain moments during the lifespan. This is the reason why, those people facing the risk of becoming alcohol addicted or are already addicted do not realise the danger they face.

As an alarming conclusion, I can say that the alcohol abuse is rather a rule than an exception.

According to the World Health Organization, the amount of alcohol considered inoffensive for a healthy man is 7g pure alcohol per day.

  »  Alcohol consumption
  »  The Alcohol
  »  Alcoholemy
  »  Alcohol abuse
  »  Drunkenness
  »  Dependence
  »  The Alcoholism
  »  The alcoholism a disease
  »  Alcoholism's casualty
  »  Evolution of dependency
  »  Loss of control
  »  Consumption's effects
  »  Co-dependency
  »  Alcoholism treatment
  »  Avoid the consumption




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