It is estimated that between 12 and 14 million adults in the U.S. suffer from alcohol abuse or are chronic alcoholics. Nearly 100,000 Americans die each year as a result of alcohol abuse and alcohol is a factor in more than half of the country's homicides, suicides, and traffic accidents. Alcohol abuse also plays a role in many social and domestic problems, from job absenteeism and crimes against property to spousal and child abuse.
Alcohol abuse differs from alcoholism in that it does not include an extremely intense craving for alcohol, loss of control over drinking, or physical dependence. Alcohol abuse is defined as a pattern of drinking that results in one or more of the following situations within a 12-month period:
There are many facts about alcoholism, alcohol addiction, alcohol dependence or alcohol abuse that are not clear to most people. What exactly is alcoholism? Is alcohol dependence, alcohol addiction and alcohol abuse the same? How does alcoholism differ from alcohol abuse? When should a person seek an alcohol rehab program or alcohol treatment program for a problem related to his or her drinking?
The immediate objectives of an alcohol treatment program are to relieve the symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal and treat any medical or psychiatric conditions present. Once these objectives have been accomplished, the alcohol detox team helps prepare you for your next level of treatment which may include: a residential alcohol rehab program, outpatient alcohol treatment program or attendance at alcoholic's anonymous meetings.