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Alcoholics May Lack Key Enzyme

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 21, 2016 – Alcoholics may lack an enzyme that would help them control their impulse to drink, a new study with rats suggests. Researchers found that turning off production of the enzyme PRDM2 in the frontal lobes of the rodents led the animals to drink alcohol, even when it was unpleasant to do so. "PRDM2 controls the expression of several genes that are necessary for effective signaling between nerve cells. When too little enzyme is produced, no effective signals are sent from the cells that are supposed to stop the impulse," said study leader Markus Heilig, head of the Center for Social and Affective Neuroscience at Linkoping University in Sweden. "We see how a single molecular manipulation gives rise to important characteristics of an addictive illness," Heilig said in a university news release. "Now that we're beginning to understand what's happening, we hope we'll ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Diagnosis and Investigation, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Gastritis, Alcoholic Psychosis

Who Drinks More -- Couples or Singles?

Posted 18 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 18, 2016 – People who are married or live together drink less than single people, according to a new study. The findings show that "once you're in a committed relationship, your drinking frequency declines permanently, whereas quantity goes back up if you exit that relationship," said lead author Diana Dinescu, a doctoral candidate in clinical psychology at the University of Virginia. The researchers looked at more than 2,400 twin pairs (about 1,600 female pairs and more than 800 male pairs). They found that those who were married drank less alcohol and drank less often than those who were single or divorced. This isn't the first study to show that married adults drink less than their peers without partners. But by focusing on twins, the authors said genetic predispositions and differences in upbringing would be less likely to affect the results. "It seems that intimate ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

U.S. College Kids Drink More, Smoke Less Than Others Their Age

Posted 16 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 16, 2016 – There's good news and bad news on America's college kids: They smoke less than other young adults, but they drink more. So finds data from a 2014 – the latest year available – federal government survey of more than 10,000 people aged 18 to 22, about 4,000 of whom were in college. The poll found that compared to others their age, about 60 percent of full-time college students are current drinkers compared to just over half of people their age who aren't in college. About 38 percent of college students said they have had a binge-drinking episode at least once over the past month, compared to about one-third of their peers who weren't in college, the report found. Binge drinking is defined as having five or more drinks on one occasion. All of this is "important now that many students are starting, or returning to, college," said Fran Harding, who directs the ... Read more

Related support groups: Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Would Weaker Beer Help Reduce Alcohol's Harms?

Posted 11 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 11, 2016 – Lowering the alcohol content in beer and other drinks may help reduce their harmful health effects, researchers say. Alcohol causes substantial disability and death worldwide. Nearly a quarter of deaths among people between the ages of 20 and 39 are alcohol-related, according to the World Health Organization. "The idea is that a small reduction in alcohol – such as beer with four percent ethanol content versus six per cent – would reduce alcohol intake per drinker even if the same overall amount of beverage is consumed," researcher Jurgen Rehm said. Rehm is director of the Institute for Mental Health Policy Research at the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto. He and his colleagues concluded that lower levels of ethanol – the most harmful ingredient in alcoholic beverages – would lead to lower blood alcohol levels in drinkers. That would ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Alcoholic Cirrhosis, Alcoholic Liver Damage, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Cardiomyopathy, Alcoholic Gastritis with Hemorrhage, Alcoholic Psychosis, Alcoholic Gastritis, Alcohol Hepatitis

Heavy Drinking Might Harm the Lungs

Posted 5 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 5, 2016 – Heavy drinking may increase the risk of lung problems, a new study suggests. "Alcohol appears to disrupt the healthy balance in the lung," said study lead author Dr. Majid Afshar, of Loyola University Chicago. He is an assistant professor in the division of pulmonary and critical care medicine and department of public health sciences. Afshar's team analyzed data from more than 12,000 American adults. The researchers found that heavy drinkers (more than one drink a day for women and more than two drinks a day for men) and people who binge-drink at least once a month had less nitric oxide in their exhaled breath than non-drinkers. Binge-drinking is consuming four or more drinks per occasion for women and five or more drinks for men. Also, the researchers found that the more alcohol heavy drinkers consumed, the lower the level of nitric oxide. Nitric oxide helps ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Respiratory Tract Disease, Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Respiratory Failure, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Psychosis

Smoke Less, Drink Less?

Posted 22 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 22, 2016 – Smokers who try to give up tobacco drink less alcohol than other smokers, a new study suggests. Researchers analyzed survey data from nearly 6,300 smokers in England, including 144 who said they had attempted to quit smoking the week before they were surveyed. Those who tried to quit cigarettes drank less alcohol and were less likely to binge drink than those who did not try to quit. "These results go against the commonly held view that people who stop smoking tend to drink more to compensate. It's possible that they are heeding advice to try to avoid alcohol because of its link to relapse," said study lead author Jamie Brown, from University College London. The reasons for the findings aren't clear. Smokers may reduce their alcohol consumption when trying to quit smoking to lower the risk of relapse, or people who drink less may be more likely to quit smoking, ... Read more

Related support groups: Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Psychosis

Frat Brothers Keep Chugging Despite Anti-Booze Efforts

Posted 20 May 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 20, 2016 – The boys of "Animal House" and "Neighbors" may be immune to anti-boozing programs that curb drinking for other college kids, new research suggests. As Brown University researcher Lori Scott-Sheldon put it: "Current intervention methods appear to have limited effectiveness in reducing alcohol consumption and alcohol-related problems among fraternity and possibly sorority members." Scott-Sheldon's team reviewed data on more than 6,000 fraternity and sorority members. The information came from 15 studies done over 25 years. Overall, the researchers looked at 21 different interventions aimed at reducing on-campus drinking. The investigators found no differences in drinking behaviors between those who had received some kind of anti-drinking intervention, and those who had not. That was true across all measures – how much the students drank per week or month, ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Marriage a Buffer Against Drinking Problems?

Posted 17 May 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 17, 2016 – Married people are less likely to have drinking problems than single people, and that protective effect is particularly strong among those with a family history of alcoholism, a new study suggests. "While clinicians have long been aware of the potentially important protective effects of marriage on alcohol problems, our study puts this observation on a firm scientific footing," said study leader Dr. Kenneth Kendler. He is a professor of psychiatry and human and molecular genetics at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, in Richmond. The researchers analyzed data from more than 3 million people in Sweden born between 1960 and 1990, including more than 70,000 with drinking problems. Compared to single people, the risk of an alcohol use disorder was 60 percent lower among married men and 71 percent lower among married women, although the study ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Jello Shots While Underage, Bigger Booze Problems Later?

Posted 29 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, April 29, 2016 – Many underage Americans down jello shots, and these young drinkers are more likely to binge drink, drink heavily and get into alcohol-fueled fights, researchers say. The Boston University researchers surveyed more than 1,000 alcohol users, aged 13 to 20, and found that just over 20 percent had consumed jello shots in the past 30 days. Rates were slightly higher among females than males, and higher among those from homes with lower incomes and those without internet access. Compared to those who did not consume jello shots, users consumed alcohol an average of slightly more than two more days per week and had more drinks per month (31 versus 19). In addition, jello shot users got into more fights after consuming alcohol (close to 19 percent versus 9.5 percent), the study found. But the study did not prove that consuming these alcohol-laced concoctions caused ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Alcoholic Cirrhosis, Alcoholic Liver Damage, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Cardiomyopathy, Alcoholic Gastritis with Hemorrhage, Alcoholic Psychosis, Alcoholic Gastritis, Alcohol Hepatitis

Moderate Drinking May Not Lengthen Life, Study Suggests

Posted 22 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 22, 2016 – Despite previous studies suggesting a bevy of health benefits, a new analysis challenges the idea that drinking alcohol in moderation might prolong your life. After reviewing nearly 90 previously completed studies, researchers said that moderate drinkers may not have a survival benefit compared to people who don't drink at all. "So-called 'moderate' drinkers do not live longer than nondrinkers," said review co-author Tanya Chikritzhs. She is a professor and director of the Alcohol Policy Research team at Australia's National Drug Research Institute. Not everyone agrees with that conclusion, but some health experts do. "Scientific data continue to support the premise that small to moderate amounts of alcohol on a regular basis are consistent with a healthy lifestyle for middle-aged and older adults," said Dr. R. Curtis Ellison, professor of medicine and public ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Breathalyzer-Locked Car Ignitions Are Saving Lives, Study Says

Posted 18 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 17, 2016 – Ignition devices that prevent driving after drinking significantly reduce alcohol-related crash deaths, a new study finds. Essentially in-car breathalyzers, the "ignition interlocks" led to a 15 percent decline in alcohol-related deaths in 18 states that required them for anyone convicted of drunken driving, the researchers found. The estimated 915 lives saved from 2007 to 2013 is comparable to the lives saved by mandatory airbag laws and the 21-year-old drinking age, the study authors noted. "The number of times that I have had to talk to a family and tell them that they lost their son or brother or daughter or sister to something so preventable as a drunk driving crash, it's hard to count even in my short time of practice – that's my motivation," said study author Dr. Elinore Kaufman, a student in the health policy program at the University of Pennsylvania ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Psychosis

One Alcoholic Drink Might Temporarily Bump Up Heart Risk

Posted 3 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 2, 2016 – In as little as an hour after sipping a glass of wine or enjoying a cocktail, your risk of heart trouble and stroke may go up, new research suggests. The good news is that within 24 hours, that same alcoholic beverage may protect against heart problems and stroke, the Harvard University researchers said. But, heavy drinkers don't seem to get those protective effects. "Heavy drinking increases risk both in the short term and the long term, but drinking smaller amounts has different effects in the subsequent hours than it does in the subsequent days and weeks," said lead researcher Elizabeth Mostofsky. She's an instructor at the Harvard School of Public Health and a postdoctoral fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. It's possible that the higher risk that occurs in the hours after drinking small amounts of alcohol may be outweighed by the ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Heart Attack, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Myocardial Infarction, Alcoholism, Hangover, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Thromboembolic Stroke Prophylaxis, Hypertensive Emergency, Intracranial Hemorrhage, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Hypertensive Heart Disease

Study Details Dire Consequences of Fetal Alcohol Disorders

Posted 25 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 25, 2016 – The many behavioral problems experienced by children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders require early attention, a new research review suggests. This group of health problems – caused by mothers drinking alcohol during pregnancy – may include anxiety, aggression, inattention and more, the researchers found. They analyzed published studies and identified three main types of behavioral problems among children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: "internalizing" behaviors such as anxiety, withdrawal and depression; "externalizing" behaviors such as aggression and delinquency; and other issues such as problems with social skills, attention and thought processing. The study, by researchers at the University of Sydney in Australia, was published online Feb. 23 in the journal Pediatrics. "The finding highlights the need for strategies for early intervention, ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hydrocephalus, Brain Anomalies incl Congenital, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Psychosis, Fetal Maturation

Pot Smokers Susceptible to Other Addictions, Study Finds

Posted 17 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17, 2016 – Pot smokers may be at significantly greater risk for developing an addiction to other drugs or alcohol, a new study suggests. Researchers found that adult marijuana use was associated with greater likelihood of developing alcohol and drug use problems, including nicotine dependence, over three years of follow-up. But it was not associated with greater risk of developing a mood or anxiety disorder. "This new finding raises the possibility that the recent rise in marijuana use may be contributing to the coincident rise in serious harms related to narcotics and other drugs of abuse," said lead researcher Dr. Mark Olfson. He is a professor of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. The results stem from a sampling of nearly 35,000 adults interviewed three years apart for the U.S. National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related ... Read more

Related support groups: Opiate Dependence, Drug Dependence, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism, Hangover, Cannabis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Substance Abuse - Cocaine, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Benzodiazepine Overdose, Alcoholic Psychosis

Study Debunks Claim That Drug Treatment Centers Are Unsafe

Posted 15 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 15, 2016 – Violent crimes are less likely to occur near outpatient drug treatment centers than near liquor and corner stores, a new study finds. The findings challenge claims that drug treatment centers attract criminals, according to the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researchers. The researchers examined 2011 data about violent crime in areas near 53 publicly funded drug treatment centers in Baltimore. They found that areas around 53 liquor and corner stores had 25 percent more murders, rapes, assaults and robberies per business. The study didn't include crimes that actually occurred in the liquor and corner stores, because they are known to be robbed more often than drug treatment centers. The study was published recently in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. "Our findings show that drug treatment centers pose no additional risk of violence ... Read more

Related support groups: Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Drug Dependence, Benzodiazepine Withdrawal, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Substance Abuse - Cocaine

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