When alcoholism affects a family member, a loved one or even yourself, you may question how this powerful dependence began. Problems like alcoholism are either caused by genetics (inherited) or caused by our environment. While the debate over nature vs. nurture continues, both views provide some insight into how genetic history and environment contribute to alcohol problems.
Genetic Causes of Alcoholism
While every addiction story is different, there are some hereditary causes of alcoholism and addiction. There is no single gene that causes addiction, but there are many different gene and chromosome combinations that combine to cause a predisposition toward addiction. Addiction is a complicated disease, and it is different for every person. While one alcohol addicted person may have alcoholism run in the family, another person may be the only addicted person in his or her family. This is because there are both genetic and hereditary causes of addiction. Even people who are genetically predisposed to alcoholism can avoid alcohol dependence by being aware of treatment and temptations to drink, and anyone can recover from alcoholism if they do become trapped by it.
Environmental Causes of Alcoholism
Environmental causes of alcoholism may be just as important as genetic causes. Environmental causes of alcoholism can include the following:
- Peer pressure
- Stressful work or home life
- Family conflicts
- Availability of alcohol
If your environment is contributing to your drinking behavior, it is important to seek alcohol treatment away from home. With treatment away from home you can take time out from stressors and everyday temptations and return stronger and more ready to combat alcohol use and remain clean.
Alcoholism and Mental Health
More than 50% of all people who struggle with alcohol abuse also have a diagnosed mental illness. While the term “mental illness” may sound very serious and rare, it is quite common. Problems such as anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder are considering mental illnesses and are often associated with drinking and alcohol dependence. Many people try to self-medicate these conditions with alcohol so that they may feel better. Unfortunately, the more you drink the more likely you are to aggravate these conditions. This can lead to a cycle of drinking and emotional distress that can only be broken with proper treatment.
Get Alcoholism Help and Alcohol Treatment Today
Are you ready to make a change? If the cycle of alcohol addiction has taken over your life, we can help. When you call our toll-free helpline, you will speak directly with an experienced addiction counselor who will take the time to get to know you. Our counselors will help you find addiction treatment options that work. We can even help arrange insurance coverage for treatment. We are here 24 hours a day, so find out how we can help you by calling us now.