The volume of the U.S. beverage market totals 53 billion gallons, and alcohol makes up about 17 percent, or nine billion gallons, of this volume. More than 80 percent of the alcoholic beverage market can be attributed to beverages like beer, with wine and liquor splitting the remaining 20 percent.
Distilled spirits make up around 7 percent of alcoholic beverages, with vodka and whiskey leading the pack in the U.S.The wine and spirits industry has experienced steady growth over the last ten years. Spirits have been growing in volume by an average of 2 percent over the last ten years. It bears noting that 90 percent of the world’s bourbon comes from the state of Kentucky.
Alcohol in Kentucky
Kentucky’s rate of binge-drinking has been one of the highest in the nation, according to a study by researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The Bluegrass State ranked third, just behind Arkansas and Mississippi, in a total number of alcoholic drinks consumed annually, at 652, according to the study.
Underage drinking is widespread in Kentucky according to the CDC. Approximately 133,000 underage people drink alcohol in Kentucky each year, If you have succumbed to alcohol abuse contact our alcohol rehab center in Louisville, Kentucky today and learn how we can help you begin your treatment.
In 2013, Kentucky students in grades nine to 12 reported:
- 63 percent had at least one drink of alcohol on one or more days during their life.
- 19 percent had their first drink before age 13.
- 30 percent had at least one drink on one or more occasions in the past 30 days.
- 19 percent had five or more drinks (binge drinking) in the past 30 days.
While tragic, these statistics also point to huge financial drains on state resources. In 2013, underage drinking cost the citizens of Kentucky $648 million. These costs include medical care, work loss, and pain and suffering associated with the multiple problems resulting from underage alcohol use.
Types of Drinks
Ethyl alcohol (ethanol), the only alcohol used in beverages, is produced by the fermentation of grains and fruits. Fermenting is a chemical process whereby yeast acts upon certain ingredients in the food, creating alcohol.
Fermented drinks, such as beer and wine, contain between two percent alcohol to 20 percent alcohol. Distilled drinks, or liquor, contain anywhere from 40 percent to 50 percent or more alcohol. The alcohol content for each kind of drink is:
- Beer: 2% to 6% alcohol
- Cider: 4% to 8% alcohol
- Wine: 8% to 20% alcohol
- Tequila: 40% alcohol
- Rum: 40% or more alcohol
- Brandy: 40% or more alcohol
- Gin: 40% to 47% alcohol
- Whiskey: 40% to 50% alcohol
- Vodka: 40% to 50% alcohol
- Liqueurs: 15% to 60% alcohol
As for how it affects the mind, it is best understood as a drug that reduces a person’s ability to think rationally and distorts his or her judgment.
Although classified as a depressant, the amount of alcohol consumed determines the type of effect. Most people drink for the stimulant effect, such as a beer or glass of wine taken to “loosen up.” But if a person consumes more than the body can handle, they then experience alcohol’s depressant effect. They start to feel “stupid” or lose coordination and control.
Alcohol overdose causes even more severe depressant effects (inability to feel pain, toxicity where the body vomits the poison, and finally unconsciousness or, worse, coma or death from severe toxic overdose). These reactions depend on how much is consumed and how quickly.
The Health Effects of Alcohol
Alcohol is classed as a depressant, meaning that it slows down the body’s vital functions. This results in slurred speech, unsteady movement, disturbed perceptions, and an inability to react quickly.
Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways and affects the way the brain works. The disruptions can change a person’s mood and behavior, making it harder to think clearly and move with coordination.
Drinking over a long period of time, or too much on a single occasion can damage the heart. This damage includes causing problems including:
- Cardiomyopathy, or the stretching of the heart muscle
- Arrhythmias, or irregular heartbeat
- High blood pressure
Research also shows that drinking moderate amounts of alcohol may protect healthy adults from developing coronary heart disease.
Heavy drinking also takes a toll on the liver. It can lead to a variety of problems and liver inflammations including:
- Steatosis, or fatty liver
- Alcoholic hepatitis
Alcohol also causes the pancreas to produce harmful substances that can lead to pancreatitis, an inflammation, and swelling of the pancreas’s blood vessels that preventing proper digestion.
Drinking too much alcohol can also increase the risk of developing certain cancers, including cancers of the mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, and breast.
Drinking too much alcohol also weakens the immune system, making the addict’s body an easier target for disease. Chronic drinkers are more liable to contract diseases like pneumonia and tuberculosis than people who do not drink chronically. In addition, binge drinking, or drinking a lot on a single occasion, slows the body’s ability to ward off infections.
Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse
Alcoholism affects millions of people a year and is the most common addiction in the United States.
According to research conducted by the National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependency (NCADD), approximately 17 million people suffer from alcohol abuse. Meanwhile, those affected by abusers’ behavior—children, parents, siblings, friends, neighbors—adds up to many, many more.
Alcoholism and Mental Health Disorders
A large portion of people suffering from alcoholism is also living with a behavioral disorder, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD. In fact, nearly 40 percent of alcoholics are living with at least one serious co-occurring mental health issue. Alcohol or drugs can serve as a coping mechanism or “escape” from pain or trauma. To assess whether you or a loved one may have a drinking problem, here are some questions to ask. In the past year, have you:
- Consumed more alcohol than you intended?
- Have wanted to, or tried to, cut down or stop drinking, but couldn’t?
- Experienced cravings or strong urge to drink?
- Realized that your drinking or the hangovers that result from heavy drinking have interfered with family, school or job obligations?
- Continued to drink despite the negative effect on your family or friends?
- Avoided activities that were important to you so that you could drink?
- Have been reckless while drinking, endangering yourself or others (driving, swimming, operating machinery)?
- Continued to drink even though it was making you feel depressed, anxious or given you memory blackouts?
- Had to consume more alcohol than before to get the same effect?
- Started to notice you have experienced withdrawal symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, shakiness, irritability, anxiety, depression, restlessness, nausea, or sweating?
It does not take long for the effects of alcohol withdrawal to cause the addicted person to feel anxious and physically ill. Some common effects of alcohol withdrawal include:
Therapies At Our Alcohol Rehab in Louisville
When you enter our alcohol addiction rehab center in Louisville Kentucky, you will have access to the following therapies:
- Individual Therapy
- Group Therapy
- Mental Health Therapy
As part of their treatment, patients are encouraged to attend outside Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings. Attending these meetings helps get them acclimated to the AA community.
What Should I Expect During Alcohol Rehab?
Individual and group therapy sessions that discuss:
– Relapse Prevention
– Managing urges and cravings
– How addiction affects the chemistry of the brain
You can also expect to learn to improve life skills in other areas, as determined by your IOP intensive outpatient program. Examples of life skills in which some patients might need improvement include employment counseling and effective communication. It is important that clients realize outpatient care can sometimes make for very intense environments. Because therapy often involves family members, these encounters can be very emotional. Still, they are critical to the recovery process, because clients who have the encouragement and support of loved ones typically improve faster. They also tend to have a better chance of enjoying a long-term, successful recovery.
Get Help At JourneyPure’s Alcohol Rehab Center in Louisville
Our alcohol rehab center in Louisville, Kentucky helps people get sober and stay sober. Most medical experts agree that long-term individualized care in an inpatient setting offers the best treatment outcomes. Our staff provides a comprehensive evaluation that considers all aspects of opiate addiction.
We draw from 12-Step care, experiential therapy, yoga and meditation, and the best, most effective behavioral and psychiatric therapies to help our patients find their path to freedom. So don’t wait, contact our alcohol rehab in Louisville, Kentucky today and begin your journey to a new life of recovery.