Your days are filled with a little more stress and worry than they used to be because of your spouse’s, child’s, parent’s or sibling’s drinking problem. It’s been the little things: that extra drink or two at dinner, the empty beer bottles scattered throughout the house and the whiskey on their breath after coming home from the office.

Your loved one is undoubtedly struggling with alcohol addiction, but what can you do to help them? It may be useful to understand the causes of alcohol addiction, so you can better talk to them about what they’re going through.

The Most Common Causes of Alcohol Addiction

It’s not always easy to identify why an addiction exists. In fact, your loved one may not truly understand why they drink so much. Still, though, it helps to know what the most common causes of alcohol addiction are:

  1. Genetics: Genetics make up about half of the underlying cause of alcohol abuse. Your genes can even determine how alcohol is broken down in the body. For example, some genes increase the pleasurable effects of alcohol, increasing the risk of developing an addiction. On the other hand, other genes increase the nausea created by drinking, which deters people from drinking and developing an addiction. An easy way to determine if genetics plays a role in your loved one’s addiction, check to see if there is a history of alcoholism in your family.
  2. Your Loved One’s Environment: There’s a connection between someone’s environment and their risk of alcohol abuse. If your loved one lives near bars and clubs, that “party” scene may have encouraged them to drink more. Income also plays a role in your loved one’s risk of addiction. People with more disposable income usually consume more alcohol. Having extra money while living near a party scene or hotspot can increase your loved one’s risk of alcohol abuse.
  3. Coping with Stress and Anxiety: It’s common for people to start drinking as a way to cope with their stress and anxiety. Whether they have a high stress job or problems at home, the common thread is that your loved one doesn’t have a healthy way to cope. Alcohol can help relieve their stress, but this relief comes with a cost. As their brain grows used to the increased amounts of dopamine, the crash afterwards gets more severe. This can actually make anxiety symptoms worse and lead to a toxic cycle of drinking to manage ever-worsening anxiety.
  4. Drinking at an Early Age: One of the biggest risks or causes for alcohol addiction is drinking at an early age. Plus, underage drinking may have been easier for your loved one since there were less laws and restrictions in place. When people start drinking earlier in life, their tolerance will naturally be higher as they age. The problem is your body needs more alcohol to reach the level of dopamine your brain craves. If your loved one started drinking at an early age, it could be one of the main causes behind their addiction.
  5. Drinking Alcohol with Medication: Is your loved one on any medication? Unfortunately, some medications can increase the effects of alcohol on the body. For example, there are medications that can speed up the rate of intoxication. If your loved one started drinking while on a medication like this, they might not have realized the damage they were doing. Learn what medications your loved one is on and talk to a doctor about any interactions they have with alcohol.

Your Loved One Can Find Lasting Recovery at Fountain Hills Recovery

Fountain Hills Recovery is a premier luxury rehab center in Arizona that is dedicated to getting your loved one the help they need. No matter what alcohol abuse has taken from your loved one, we’re here to help them get it back.

Our alcohol addiction treatment takes an individualized approach. That means our staff can create a personalized recovery plan for your loved one to heal. Plus, our experienced staff is highly trained and able to provide your loved one the expert care, respect and compassion they deserve. If your loved one is interested in overcoming their alcohol addiction, contact our admissions team today.