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A 35-year-old member asked:

What is a good way to differentiate between alcoholism and alcohol abuse?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Louis Cady
Psychiatry 32 years experience
Great question: Alcohol abuse: - intemperate use. - legal consequences - drinking more than you thought you were going to alcohol dependence: - you can stay away from it for different periods, but when you come back, and you have one drink, you just can't stop. - dependence - in extreme forms - requires a drink of alcohol in the morning just to "settle your nerves" and function. - drinking despite md orders.

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A 49-year-old member asked:

How are alcoholism and alcohol abuse different?

1 doctor answer3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Dheeraj Raina
Psychiatry 29 years experience
Could be same: Alcoholism is a slightly more imprecise term that could imply either alcohol abuse or dependence. Alcohol abuse is when someone continues to drink despite negative consequences. Alcohol dependence is when, in addition to alcohol abuse, the person also has physical dependence (needing to drink to avoid withdrawal) or tolerance (needing increasing amounts) or compulsive use.

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Last updated Apr 27, 2013
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