Remembering Alcohol Use Disorder Amidst the Opioid Epidemic

As we come to a close on Alcohol Awareness Month 2018, we want to stress that raising awareness of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) should continue to be a priority. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), 88,000 people die every year from AUD and other alcohol-related causes (62,000 men and 26,000 women).

Health issues related to AUD include:

  1. Liver disease. Occurring more often in men than women, nearly half of all deaths related to liver disease are the result of AUD. One out of every three people suffering from liver disease related to AUD need a liver transplant.
  2. Drinking alcohol excessively raises the chances of being diagnosed with mouth, digestive tract, liver and breast cancers.
  3. Dementia and heart disease have also been linked to excessive drinking.
  4. In the hot summer months, heat stroke and dehydration are common while drinking alcohol.
  5. Alcohol use has been linked to many risky behaviors, including car accidents, falls and drowning.

A 2015 study revealed that 10,265 people were killed as a result of drinking and driving, making up one-third (29 percent) of all driving-related deaths.

To remain healthy, consider placing some recommended limits on your consumption. The Center for Disease Control recommends that men stay within five drinks at one time or no more than 15 drinks per week. Women are advised to stay within four drinks at one time or no more than eight drinks per week.

In a recent interview with Addiction Professional, our Vice President of Clinical Development Romas Buivydas urged readers to “…remember that alcohol is still the most abused and one of the most fatal substances in the United States. We are living in a culture that both celebrates and trivializes excessive drinking.”

If you feel that alcohol is taking over your life and ability to function the way you used to, there are many treatment options available – including Spectrum Health Systems and the New England Recovery Center. To inquire about treatment for yourself or a loved one, call us anytime at (800) 366-7732.

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