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5 Types Of Alcoholics

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And it may not be until they do not have access to their alcohol that you notice odd behaviors. They are very high functioning if they can still drink at their specified drinking times. However, these sub-categories are very important when learning about alcoholism and trying to determine if you or someone you love has an addiction. Sub-categories include factors such as age and how well they can function in society.

If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol use disorder, you should seek help right away. The first step to creating a better life for yourself is getting professional help. The survey also included responses from individuals in treatment as well as those not seeking treatment.

Intermediate Familial Alcoholic

Many also have a high probability of cocaine use disorder and opioid use disorder. In the case of significant alcohol dependence, medical detox and medications are often necessary in addition to therapeutic treatment methods. Highly trained professionals can guide families and loved ones into a treatment program that will be optimal for enhancing a sustained recovery. Family therapy is a type of mental health counseling that helps families gain communication skills, heal old arguments and traumas, and find recovery together. Family therapists understand how each person in the family unit is affected by other members in the family group, and have special education and experience in helping each individual heal and…

Researchers found that they have the highest rates of employment among alcoholics, with 68% working full-time and an average family income of nearly $50,000 a year. About 64% are male, while around 38% are married and 21% are divorced.

Types Of Alcoholism

Other physical effects include an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease, malabsorption, alcoholic liver disease, and several cancers. Damage to the central nervous system and peripheral nervous system can occur from sustained alcohol consumption. A wide range of immunologic defects can result and there may be a generalized skeletal fragility, in addition to a recognized tendency to accidental injury, resulting a propensity to bone fractures. Nine percent of alcoholics fall into the chronic severe category. Most are middle-aged and began drinking by the time they were 16. Many have been diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder and other mental illnesses, including major depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, social phobias and panic disorder. The majority smoke, and many use other drugs, including marijuana, cocaine and opioids.

5 different types of alcoholics

The intermediate familial subtype are usually those with a family history of alcoholism. Close to 50% of people in this category have alcoholic relatives. The intermediate subtype usually begin drinking early in life, typically around 17. It isn’t until 30 that alcohol becomes a problem in their lives. The young anti-social subtype makes up 21% of alcoholics in the U.S.

Understanding The Five Types Of Alcoholics

The good news is they’re more likely to seek treatment than those in other groups. They are also the most likely to participate in detox programs at inpatient treatment centers. Functional alcoholics consume alcohol daily or at least several times per week. Some young-adult alcoholics outgrow their problem drinking, while others develop an addiction to alcohol as they get older. The best way to find a successful treatment program is to understand the different types of alcohol issues. No two alcoholics are exactly the same, but many people with alcoholism share common characteristics. If you or a loved one is ready to overcome an alcohol addiction, reach out today.

Over 690,000 students are assaulted by another student who has been drinking. Have a confidential, completely free conversation with a treatment provider about your financial options.


According to Jellinek, these individuals are suffering from the disease. Penick EC, Reed MR, Crawley PA, Powell BJ. Differentiation of alcoholics by family history. 2Epsilon alcoholism, the fifth species, is not included in this table because Jellinek considered knowledge of that subtype to be too scant to describe in detail.

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People with Type B tend to have had conduct problems as children. They may abuse multiple drugs and have multiple psychiatric disorders. Their level of dependence tends to be much higher than those with Type A. Binge drinking and benders – It is very common for people at this stage to get very drunk for days at a time. They are searching for that feeling of euphoria they once experienced, but it will not return. Everything is disregarded in their lives; including family, friends and even safe shelter.


Around one-quarter of the functional alcoholic demographic have had at least one major depressive episode in their lives as well. Depression and mood disorders commonly co-occur with alcohol abuse and can increase a person’s vulnerability to addiction. The functional alcoholic may be good at covering up emotional distress and issues with alcohol, and able to maintain outward appearances of success.

5 different types of alcoholics

At the third stage there are physical and social consequences, i.e., hangovers, family problems, work problems, etc. A person will continue to drink excessively, disregarding the problems. It may lead to liver diseases, such as fatty liver disease and cirrhosis. Alcohol also increases the risk of death from car crashes, injuries, homicide, and suicide. You suffer from withdrawal of alcohol and need to drink, or take a substance that is similar, to relieve the withdrawal symptoms.

Until the 1960’s, typology theory—including Jellinek’s work—was guided primarily by armchair intuition and clinical observation. With the development of better measurement techniques and research methods, however, empirical research on typologies gained momentum. Several studies using this approach indicated that alcoholic subtypes defined by single dimensions could indeed be differentiated in predictable ways on a variety of other dimensions . Despite these shortcomings, the early attempts to differentiate and classify alcoholics had a positive influence on the development of alcohol studies. For example, they led to the identification of important defining characteristics of alcoholic subtypes, such as family history, psychopathology, drinking patterns, personality factors, and physical consequences. Finally, they set the stage for the development of more sophisticated theories, such as those developed by Jellinek. This is the rarest and most dangerous type of alcoholism, making up 9.2% of alcoholics.

Moss warns that while some alcoholic subtypes may function better than others, “in all cases, alcohol dependence must be viewed as a severe disease with Transitional living a significant adverse impact on health and well-being.” The chronic severe subtype is the rarest subtype, accounting for about 9% of U.S. alcoholics.

The average age is 26 and over 50% of this group have a anti-social personality disorder. The average age 5 types of alcoholics young anti-social types start to drink is much younger than that of the young adult alcoholic type.

  • It defines a standard drink as one 12-ounce bottle of beer, one 5-ounce glass of wine, or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits.
  • They do this to try and calm the pressure they are feeling from themselves and from those around them.
  • Chronic severe alcoholics suffer from psychiatric disorders more often than other subtypes of alcoholics, including bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety disorders.
  • In 1979, the World Health Organization discouraged the use of “alcoholism” due to its inexact meaning, preferring “alcohol dependence syndrome”.

Additionally, heavy drinking over time has been found to have a negative effect on reproductive functioning in women. This results in reproductive dysfunction such as anovulation, decreased ovarian mass, problems or irregularity of the menstrual cycle, and early menopause. Alcoholic ketoacidosis can occur in individuals who chronically misuse alcohol and have a recent history of binge drinking. The amount of alcohol that can be biologically processed and its effects differ between sexes.

5 different types of alcoholics

They are typically in their middle-twenties and possess a history including an early initiation of alcohol abuse.Over 50% have family history of AUD and half have been also diagnosed with an Antisocial Personality Disorder. Many Young Antisocials also struggle with anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder. Intermediate familial alcoholics are similar to functional alcoholics.

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