Alcohol-Related Problems: Recognition and Intervention

Excessive alcohol use can affect every part of a person's life, causing serious medical problems, family conflict, legal difficulties and job loss. Early identification of alcohol-related problems is important . The most effective tool for screening is a thorough history of the patient's drinking behavior, designed to identify patterns of alcohol-related difficulties with physical and mental health, family life, legal authorities and employment. Alcohol abuse is manifested by recurrent alcohol use despite significant adverse consequences of drinking, such as problems with work, law, health or family life. Alcohol drinkers can be categorized as at-risk, problem or alcohol dependent, The severity of the alcohol problem and the patient's readiness to change should determine the intervention selected by the family physician.


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