About Alcoholism

Alcoholism and alcohol abuse are subjects many people want to know more about. Their interest is often triggered by some personal experience. Whatever the direct cause, The Beachcomber welcomes such contact and we assure you of our deep concern. Evaluation is a key to our successful programs over the years and we gladly share our knowledge with you. A few questions we’re asked by visitors and family members:

Who is inclined toward alcoholism and alcohol abuse?

Alcoholics come in all shapes and sizes. Alcoholism crosses all ethnic and racial lines and although it seems to be passed along in families it’s not tied in with “genes” as is sometimes claimed. There is general agreement that alcoholism results from altered brain chemistry. Yet, no authority has established how much alcohol must be consumed to cross the line to uncontrolled drinking by any specific person.

What causes alcoholism and alcohol abuse?

Social and cultural practices are two of the many “causes.” However, the basic reasons are often tied to individuals and their own personality traits. The cause is nearly impossible to define since we all possess qualities that are distinctly ours. There are examples of twins raised in identical circumstances with one a victim of alcoholism and the other free of any alcohol abuse. The opposite has also been encountered with alcoholism controlling twins throughout separated lives and while living totally apart.

When does alcoholism or alcohol abuse get started?

There is no “down side” entry level for alcohol abuse although alcoholism is very rare in young children. They can, however, become “abusers” and may if alcohol is easily available and part of peer culture. Alcoholism does often get a foothold with “teens” and can serve as a basis for later hard drug use. Both alcoholism and drug addiction are tied to social environment. Parental influences can be the key factor in prevention and alcohol dependency among family members has been known to work as a contagious illness.

Where is alcoholism and alcohol abuse most rampant?

Alcoholism and the abuse of alcohol are encountered by health care professionals in nearly every segment of society. They cross into every ethnic group and into most trades and professions. More men than women are alcoholics but women run a close second. Female alcoholics generally begin alcohol abuse later in life and the ravages of alcoholism are more severe and more frequently fatal.

Why does alcoholism and alcohol abuse “just keep on going?”

One of the major symptoms of Alcoholism is uncontrolled drinking and this is usually accompanied by denial of any problem. The reasons for continued drinking in spite of severe illness are as many and varied as those willing to discuss the matter. One thing that’s quickly made apparent is the firm conviction that no help is needed. Many alcohol abusers spend years proving they can’t stop drinking yet deny dependency. Denial is, in fact, established as a primary symptom of alcoholism!


When the alcohol abuser can admit to problems and seek advice the first major bridge to change has been crossed. Some consider this the first step to recovery! Do you, or someone close to you believe there might be a problem with alcohol? Is someone you care about “sick and tired of being sick and tired?” Let us offer our advice and counsel. All discussions will be in strict confidence and at no charge.