Many of us imagine an alcoholic as a homeless, perpetually drunk street person. In fact, over 90% of alcoholics are just like you and me: heads of families; professionals;blue collar workers;brothers,sisters and parents. Millions of Americans suffer from this disease.

Alcoholism is not  necessarily the result of a weak will, low moral fiber or being the partying type. While certain behaviors predispose one to becoming an alcoholic there is without a doubt a genetic predisposition. In other words, if your father and or mother was an alcoholic, you have a much greater risk of becoming addicted to alcohol than someone who has no first degree relatives with alcoholism.

Alcoholics don’t drink to get high as much as they drink to avoid withdrawal. While narcotic withdrawal will make you miserable it is unlikely to kill you. On the other hand, alcohol withdrawal can be deadly.

How do you know if you or a loved one is an alcoholic? There are many questionaires which have been developed in an attempt to answer that question. Unfortunately, only a few have been found to be valid. If you find yourself in a bar consuming multiple drinks before noon on a regular basis, then the answer is probably yes. If you find yourself lying to coworkers,friends and family about drinking habits, then too you might have some issues. Multiple other behaviors are considered signs of an alcoholic, but the bottom line is if your drinking affects your personal life and work and you still drink or if you drink more than four drinks nightly you should seek some help. Most scholars outside of the block use review with that in mind have cool ranks.