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Aggravating Medicines and Risk Factors
Why do some people drink alcohol all their lives and never become alcoholics while others become dependent? What are the risk factors that contribute to the likelihood that you may use alcohol in an abusive manner? The main ones are:
Family history: there is some evidence to show that people with alcohol problems often come from families who have a history of alcohol dependency. However, whether there is a genetic factor, or alcohol abuse is a learned behaviour is unclear.
Early exposure: If you began using alcohol in youth or adolescence, you are more likely to develop alcohol dependence as an adult.
Substance abuse: If you use illegal drugs or prescription medicines you are more likely to abuse alcohol and tobacco as well.
Mental health issues: If you have mental health problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety disorder or depression you are more likely to misuse alcohol.
Environmental factors: If you live in an area where it is easy to acquire alcohol and people traditionally drink heavily, you are more likely to develop alcohol dependence.
Peer pressure: If your friends drink heavily or urge you to drink when you are with them you are more likely to develop alcohol dependence.
Emotional problems: You are more likely to drink when you are going through a traumatic time with friends, family or colleagues and this can develop into an abusive habit if the problems continue long term.
Lack of direction: If you have no regular activities that give your life a sense of structure or purpose, you may be more likely to begin an abusive relationship with alcohol.
Being male: Men are three times more likely to develop problems with alcohol than women.
However, it is perfectly possible to have an array of these risk factors in your life and not develop alcohol dependency, while another person with no obvious risk factors can become dependent.
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