Media images of drinking among college students
emphasize hilarious parties and mischievous antics performed by
college students while under the influence of alcohol. A recent
study funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
(NIAAA), however, suggests that there is a dark side to college
drinking that needs to be taken more seriously.
Labeling of Containers and the Prevention of Drinking in Pregnancy
Alcohol use during pregnancy can lead to fetal alcohol syndrome
(FAS) and to other conditions that affect intelligence and behavior.
The United States Surgeon General has advised women to abstain
from drinking during pregnancy. However, not all women are aware
of the dangers of drinking during the time they are pregnant and
some of those who are aware have difficulty stopping drinking.
Prevention efforts are most effective when they are multilevel,
aimed at a number of different audiences. Some efforts are directed
at pregnant drinkers themselves ("indicated" prevention)
while others ("universal") are aimed at promoting the
health and well-being of all individuals in the community, through
media campaigns and social policy.
Genetic Aspects of Alcoholism
It has been reported since the times of antiquity that alcohol-drinking
patterns of children resemble those of their parents. The notion
that alcoholism is a disease in which individuals have difficulties
with or are unable to control their consumption of alcohol rather
than a "mental weakness" had its origins in the medical
literature of the mid 19th Century. How definitive are the findings
in humans supporting the inheritance of alcoholism?