Cutting societal alcohol use may prevent alcohol disorders developing

on 02 November 2018
Hypnosis for indirect brain learning

I learned in a very subtle way, about 18 years ago, that society and certain bodies, including some in the medical profession, not only accepts that people drink, it actually expects them to do so; how odd is that . . .

Society expects that you drink but why?

It was in 1999, following years of regular drinking, be it with friends, in restaurants, cafe's and bars, that I finally came to my senses and quit drinking completely. In 2002, when I had my first aviation medical exam, I was asked two questions: 1) "do you smoke?" and 2) "how many units of alcohol do you consume each week?" They ask you if you smoke but assume you drink! The aviation medical examiner, even suggested the odd glass of red wine wouldn't hurt and may actually have some benefits. And, if you drink, that may well be sage advice, the poison of least harm, so to speak! However, years later and better equipped with more factual knowledge about alcohol, when it comes to the good news about it, there isn't any, it's all bad news for the brain. However, people like it and the kind of damage that is done to the brain; only happens to other people, so, the odd one or two or three won't hurt me. 

Practically speaking, the closer you are to one drink per week, the safer you are because the brain is a really amazing and forgiving piece of kit, so it allows you a little pleasure without there being too much to be concerned about. To a certain extent, you can also make other adjustments, although they may not totally negate the potential harm done by alcohol, they will help you in many other ways and that, might be, your saving grace. So, what are those other things? Well to start with we need to focus on the basics of life, air, liquids, and food. Breathing properly, diaphragmatically, will add some value to your body and since your brain uses over one-fifth of the oxygen from each breath, it will better enable normal brain function. Liquids are next, of course, water is very essential but you can drink too much of it and that can deplete your electrolytes. Liquids hydrate us and are somewhat akin to lubricating the body and brain, a little like oil lubricates an engine. Lastly, there is the food we eat and in some sense, the brain is similar to the IT idiom, garbage in, garbage out. Food provides us with the bulk of our nutritional needs, amino acids, especially the 9 essential amino acids, we can't live a proper functioning life without them and we can only get them through food and some juices (naturally), or through supplements (artificially). There are 11 other non-essential amino acids, acids that can mostly be synthesized by the body, although 6 of those are limited in their synthesis under certain circumstances, e.g. through illness or stress.

Health is usually high on the agenda of many clients I see, yet, despite that, many of them engage in the consumption, sometimes overconsumption of alcohol (14 units for women and 21 for men per week). One of the major issues with alcohol is that it works its magic across many of the neurotransmitter circuits in the brain and somewhat explains the many and diverse behaviours it produces. What is really troubling though, is that this research highlights the dangers that young people face, the earlier they start, the greater the potential risk for developing an alcohol-related issue. Ironically, as it is with smoking, young people have so much more information these days, than in days gone by, as to the harmful effects of alcohol, as well as nicotine, yet they still can't wait to get the first drink. So, in line with this research, we adults have to step up to the mark and be examples to our youth because the best way to teach, is through example!

To a certain extent, hypnosis can very effectively help people reestablish good levels of control over their habits, be it, alcohol, smoking or a bad diet and poor nutrition, want to find out more, then why not make an appointment for a free consultation?

Hypnotherapy stands out as one of the most effective strategic life management methods there is, especially in its ability to promote good states of mental wellness. The behaviours that make life challenging are often a result of too much stress, too little sleep and too little by way of clarity! So, to take back control of your mind and your life, it makes perfect sense to use a methodology that addresses the subconscious mind's role in perpetuating negative, vague and ambiguous states of mind. Hypnosis helps us to create calm relaxing states of mind that make life work better! If you would like to address any concerns you have in this direction, or, if you just want to make your life feel better,  then why not make an appointment for a Free Consultation? Hypnosis gives you the ability to have a good life!

The objective here is to help people understand how and why we become illogically trapped into irrational emotional experiences that may actually be happening for reasons different to that which we would imagine! If you want to know more about how Hypnotherapy can help you; why not make an appointment for a Free Consultation?

For more information on the Free Consultation - Go Here Or, to book your Free Consultation today, you can do so here

The Research: 

Society must take collective responsibility to reduce the harm caused by alcohol use disorders, a University of Otago academic says. Dr Charlene Rapsey, of New Zealand's Dunedin School of Medicine's Department of Psychological Medicine, says while alcohol is commonly enjoyed by many people and only a minority of people develop an alcohol use disorder, the negative consequences of such a disorder can be severe and long-lasting.

Her research paper, published in Alcohol and Alcoholism, used data from Te Rau Hinengaro, The New Zealand Mental Health Survey, to study transitions from alcohol use to disorder. Of the nearly 13,000 participants, 94.6 per cent had used alcohol at least once, 85.1 per cent had had at least 12 drinks in the past year, and 16 per cent had developed an alcohol disorder. Of concern was that with each 10 per cent rise in the number of people who use alcohol in an individual's age and gender group, there was an increased likelihood of them developing an alcohol disorder in the following year.

"We already knew that for young people, peer group norms influence drinking. If people in my peer group drink then I am more likely to drink, but it was interesting that the broad social context of general alcohol consumption -- alcohol consumption by people I don't even know -- was associated with an increased likelihood of the subsequent onset of a disorder," she says. Most people's drinking started in high school and transitioned rapidly from consuming alcohol to having an alcohol use disorder. "Considering many teenagers leave high school at 18 years of age, by then 79 per cent of 18-year-olds had used alcohol, with 57 per cent regularly drinking," Dr Rapsey says. Of those to develop an alcohol use disorder, 50 per cent did so by age 20 and 70 per cent by age 25.

Another key finding was that people live with alcohol use disorders for a long time before they experience remission -- 45 per cent of people still met the criteria for an alcohol disorder after 10 years. Men are also at greater risk of developing a disorder and are less likely to quit. 

"This research highlights our collective responsibility to each other; by reducing the drivers of overall levels of consumption, we have the opportunity to reduce harm to others. "Relatively small inconveniences, such as limiting the availability of alcohol and higher alcohol prices, can have significant influences on reducing alcohol-related harms," she says. Dr Rapsey argues the research adds to a body of work pushing for policies aimed at reducing overall consumption.

"The Law Commission Report Alcohol in our Lives: Curbing the Harm made a number of evidence-based recommendations to reduce alcohol-related harms in New Zealand. Unfortunately, the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act (2012) did not adopt many of the recommendations that had the potential to change people's lives. There is clear research to guide policymakers if there is social and political will.

"This latest research also indicates that resources to prevent and to treat alcohol use disorders need to focus on those under 25 years of age in particular. "In addition, while the majority of disorders develop in young people, alcohol disorders are a chronic condition and therefore treatment needs to be available over many years."

Story Source:

Materials provided by the University of OtagoNote: Content may be edited for style and length.

Journal Reference:

  1. Charlene M Rapsey, J Elisabeth Wells, Ms Chrianna Bharat, Meyer Glantz, Ronald C Kessler, Kate M Scott. Transitions Through Stages of Alcohol Use, Use Disorder and Remission: Findings from Te Rau Hinengaro, The New Zealand Mental Health SurveyAlcohol and Alcoholism, 2018; DOI: 10.1093/alcalc/agy069

Cite This Page:

The University of Otago. "Cutting societal alcohol use may prevent alcohol disorders from developing." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 October 2018. <>.