How Alcoholism Starts

Alcoholism can seriously affect every aspect of your life, from your job to your family. The circumstances of every person’s alcohol dependency are different, but many of the same patterns can be seen in different cases. Many people begin to become dependent on alcohol when they drink frequently to deal with stress or to relax. As their body’s alcohol tolerance increases, they need to drink more to feel the effects of the alcohol. Eventually, they find themselves needing to have a drink—and then more than one drink—on a regular basis. If a person begins to experience withdrawal symptoms such as headache, depression, or fatigue after not having a drink, it’s a strong sign of alcohol dependence.

One of the hardest things about confronting your alcoholism is admitting that you have a problem in the first place. If you are interested in learning how to stop drinking in Fort Lauderdale, contact an alcoholism counseling center as soon as possible.

The Teen’s Guide to Recognizing Drug Problems

Teen drug abuse and addiction in Fort Lauderdale can have serious, lasting consequences. If you suspect that a friend or family member has a problem with drug addiction, you should seek help from an adult who can help him a teen drug counseling and substance abuse treatment program. Here is a helpful guide to recognizing the signs that your friend might have a problem with drug abuse or drug addiction.

Personality Changes

If your friend exhibits personality changes, that doesn’t automatically mean that he has a problem with drug or alcohol abuse. However, sudden and significant changes in mood or personality are a sign that your friend needs to talk to an adult or a professional counselor. If you notice that your friend has suddenly become withdrawn, depressed, anxious, angry, frequently tired or sick, or disinterested in activities that he previously enjoyed, he is exhibiting serious personality changes. If these occur in combination with other warning signs, you should talk to an adult about the fact that your friend might have a drug addiction.

Problems in School

Drug and alcohol abuse can make it incredibly difficult to keep up in school. If your friend has a drug addiction, he may frequently miss class, or stop coming to school entirely. His grades will begin to slip, and he will get poor scores on assignments, projects, papers, and tests, if he participates in them at all. He may also have tension or problems with school administrators, and be frequently called to the principal’s office or put in detention. If you notice that your friend is developing problems in school that he didn’t have before, you should talk to a trusted adult about the possibility of drug or alcohol abuse.

Difficulties with Friends and Family Members

Another common sign of a drug addiction or drug abuse is frequent difficulties with friends and family. If your friend is suddenly experiencing regular conflict with friends and family members that he used to get along with, he may have a drug or alcohol problem.

The Effects of Teen Drinking

When your child becomes involved in underage drinking near Fort Lauderdale, the results can be devastating. Alcohol addiction and alcohol abuse can significantly impair your teen’s physical, mental, and emotional health, and can impact every other aspect of his personal and academic life. Here is a look at some of the most common and dangerous effects of underage drinking.

Delayed Brain Development

Scientists have determined that the brain does not become fully developed until around the age of 24. The areas of the brain that continue developing in adolescents are areas responsible for stress response, managing drives, critical thinking, and understanding the consequences of actions. Underage drinking can significantly stunt, delay, or prevent brain development in these areas. Alcohol can also damage the frontal regions of the brain, causing lifelong neurological problems. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may also cause seizures, which can further damage the brain.

Increased Risk of Emotional and Mental Health Problems

Underage drinking also greatly increases a teen’s risk of suffering from emotional and mental health problems. Teen alcohol abuse can contribute to depression, anxiety, personality changes, and other serious emotional and psychological symptoms. Chronic or heavy alcohol abuse may put a teen at a higher risk of suicidal thoughts, ideation, and suicide attempts. The neurological problems associated with alcohol abuse and alcohol withdrawal can also increase a teen’s risk of developing mental health problems later in life.

Social and Academic Difficulties

Chronic alcohol abuse can decrease school performance, and even cause teens to stop going to school entirely. Studies have shown that teens who participate in underage drinking miss classes, fall behind in school work, perform badly on papers and exams, and receive lower grades overall. Alcohol abuse and underage drinking also put extreme stress on a teen’s social and familial relationships. The other problems that result from underage drinking have a significant effect on relationships with family and friends. Teens also tend to lie more, break house rules, get into fights more often, and hang out with other teens with substance abuse problems, further degrading their social and familial relationships.

How Alcohol Affects the Brain

Because the brain does not finish developing until you reach the age of 24, drug abuse and alcohol abuse in Fort Lauderdale can have a profound effect on your brain. Underage drinking can significantly delay the development of crucial areas of the brain. Chronic alcohol abuse can cause serious, permanent brain damage.

Watch this video to learn more about how alcohol abuse can affect the brain. If you or someone you know is suffering from alcohol addiction or drug addiction, you should talk to a trusted adult about the possibility of participating in teen alcohol counseling or substance abuse treatment.