Alcoholism is a common problem that affects thousands of people across the globe.
Aside from simply ruining one’s health and finances, excessive consumption of alcohol can also result in the genetic transfer of the addiction to the next generation.
In a Cambridge study, it was found that there is a 50 percent chance of alcoholism being transferred directly to the next generation. Alcohol addiction is a family disease and one that can be carried down for multiple generations.
This is why those who have alcoholic parents or grandparents and grandparents often find themselves easily addicted to alcohol.
If alcoholism runs in your family, here are a couple of things you should definitely keep in mind:
Research Your Family History
The first thing you need to do is determine whether anyone in your family has a prior history of alcoholism. Ask your family members and close family acquaintances if you don’t have a clear knowledge of your family history. Some of the most common signs of alcoholism include:
Those who have a history of alcoholism tend to demonstrate the following traits:
- They’re lying about when or how often an individual drink
- He/She possesses an increased tolerance for alcohol
- He/She experiences memory loss or blackouts
- Tremors and shakes of the body at random
- They’re having issues at work or school
- They have a strong inclination to drink at all times
- They like to drink in secret or alone
- They’re unable to control alcohol consumption
- Neglecting routines like eating and practicing personal hygiene
If any of your family members have more than one of the above-mentioned characteristics then they’re definitely an alcoholic. Once you determine whether that’s the case or not, you need to make sure that the negative effects of alcohol don’t overtake your life.
If you have determined that there is a history of alcoholism in your family then you need to start drinking responsibly. Start off by trying to limit your alcohol intake if you already have a tendency to drink too much. It’s best to slowly transition to an occasional drinker for celebrations only.
Drinking without moderation is just a bad idea in general, and even more so when you have a family. Alcoholics are usually so busy drinking that they don’t give enough time to family members and often end up abusing them.
If you or someone you know have been unable to develop responsible drinking habits for a long time then it’s time to seek help. For example, if you live in New Haven then simply search for ‘drug rehab and substance recovery services in New Haven’ to find one close to you
Educate Your Children
Once you’ve determined that alcoholism runs in the family, there are a lot of steps you need to take to make sure your children don’t end up with the same bad habits as you or your predecessors. One of the best ways to achieve this is by educating them about the risks of alcohol in the context of family medical history.
While a lot of parents try to discipline their children as soon as they’re old enough to understand to never touch alcohol, this method often doesn’t work. Kids can and will find ways to take alcohol or marijuana at a young age, and discouraging them will only encourage them to try it out even more.
So the best thing to do is to have a sit down with them to explain the bad effects of alcohol and how easy it will be for them to lose control. That way they will know where the true danger lies.
Notify Health Care Providers
If you have any type of long or short-term illnesses and have recently found out about the history of alcoholism in your family then you should notify your healthcare provider immediately.
History of alcoholism can significantly change how treatments are carried out, so definitely let your doctor know.
If you’re afraid that your healthcare provider will judge you if they find out you’re a drinker, you need to overcome this shame. They’re the best people to provide you with sound medical advice so be honest with them at all times.
Don’t be Ashamed
Being an alcoholic or finding out you have alcoholism running in your family can happen to anyone anywhere, so there’s nothing to be ashamed about.
What matters most is taking the right steps to make sure you and your kids can avoid alcohol addiction.