Alcohol plays too significant a role in society today and should be an after thought as opposed to the most essential addition to any social event. Alcohol creates numerous social, economic, and health problems that could very easily be stopped if it played a less influential role in every day events. The use of alcohol is prominent in, but not limited to three social circles that include students, family groups, and religious gatherings.
Experts have much to say about alcohol use and abuse in these three categories, including all of the negative aspects of drinking. Social drinking is a common occurrence around America. Whether it is after work or after a football game, white collar or blue, two-thirds of the American population sit down at least once a week to enjoy an alcoholic beverage (Med.unc.edu). Many of these people do not realize that drinking is what leads to uncontrolled behavior, drunk driving, and in the long run, addiction.
They are thinking only of the short-term effects, not the negative long-term consequences. People who regularly turn to alcohol eventually begin to neglect their families and other responsibilities, consequently wrecking the lives of loved ones and their own as well. While the lasting negative effects of alcohol use are spewed daily through the media, the problems will not stop until society completely understands how alcohol can indeed pose a serious threat to the nations social welfare.
Alcohol has an adverse effect on the economy. The consequences of alcohol abuse and dependence cost the nation an estimated $99 billion each year (Gordis, 209). It is tax money that pays for alcoholics who both live on the street and are barely getting by or who are in government-funded hospitals and institutions. The United States should either find an alternative way to take care of these people or perhaps raise liquor taxes.
Either one of these options would conceivably minimize the economical problems caused by alcoholic beverages. It is not the responsibility of the people as a whole to take care of the homeless people who have fallen prey to the lure of alcohol related problems. As of 1991, about 14 million Americans met medical diagnostic criteria for alcohol abuse or alcoholism.
There are numerous health problems that are linked to drinking. For instance, if alcohol is consumed during pregnancy, birth defects may result, worse, the baby could be born addicted to alcohol (Kellam, 30). High doses of alcohol have also been found to delay puberty in females and slow bone growth and result in weaker bones (Windle, 179).
One of the main risks of drinking alcoholic beverages is having a stroke. A review of epidemiological evidence concludes that moderate alcohol consumption increases the potential risk of strokes caused by bleeding (Camargo, 1620). Another medical problem that involves alcohol is the use of prescription medications. Alcohol may interact harmfully with more that 100 medications, including some sold over the counter. The effects of alcohol are especially augmented by medications that depress the function of the central nervous system, such as sleeping pills, sedatives, and antidepressants, and certain painkillers (Thomas, 336).
Upon understanding the risks of drinking, some people would surely stop. Better health is a good reason to do so.