The Effects of Alcoholism

1676 Words7 Pages
A majority of American citizens can honestly say that they, or a loved one, have been personally victimized by the dangerous side effects of alcohol. Yet alcohol is still considered a recreational beverage, that too many people take for granted. The addiction to alcohol is officially labelled as “Alcoholism.” Alcoholism can affect one’s life in a numerous amount of ways. It is an overlooked danger in the U.S. which can negatively affect the youth of America and the economy, which is why it is an enormous danger to the U.S. Although alcoholism is not necessarily constrained to one demographic, the prevalence of alcoholism, especially in underage drinkers, seems to be of growing concern. In the last five years alone, underage age drinking has seen a startling and rather significant increase. For example, in 2009, about 59.3% of high school seniors had consumed alcohol. The same poll, taken in 2014, showed that 65.7% had now participated in the consumption of alcohol, despite being underage (Whillenburg 3). So why the hike in usage over such a short span of time? A few tentative conclusions have surfaced in response to the rapidly growing numbers. Research has shown that the absence of a parental figure within the household has proven to be an effective catalyst in spurring youth to participate in what would otherwise be considered reckless behavior. An additional explanation for the use of alcohol by an underage demographic can be the self-justification, created by youth, based on parental observation. If an adolescent actively participates in the consumption of alcohol, in an attempt to emulate the actions of their parents, then psychologically, that action would warrant that much more credibility. The detrimental effect of unde... ... middle of paper ... Costs U.S. $223.5 Billion." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 17 Oct. 2011. Web. 17 Apr. 2014. Catanzaro, Ronald J. Alcoholism: The Total Treatment Approach. Springfield, IL: Thomas, 1968. Print. Heilig Markus. “The Right Medicine for Alcoholism” Washington Post [Washington] 30 Aug. 2013: n. page. Print. Smith, Melinda. “ Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse: Signs, Symptoms, and Help for Alcoholism.” Helpguide Helps You Help Yourself and Others. N.P, Aug. 2013. Web. 31, Mar. 2014. Swartzwelder, Scott H. "Fact Sheets - Underage Drinking." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Jan. 2014. Web. 16 Apr. 2014. Torr, James D. Teens and Alcohol. San Diego, CA: Greenhaven, 2002. Print. Whillenburg, Mark. “Alcoholism.” New York Times [New York] 20 Mar. 2011: n. page. Print.
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