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A Problem Shared is a Problem Halved

It has long been known that alcoholicsÕ children are 50% more likely to have a drink problem in the future, and new research from the Sahlgrenska Academy is shedding new light on this link. Carried out by researcher Anna S?derpalm Gordh, the study has been published in the most recent issue of the journal Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behaviour.

The study involved 58 healthy people who were divided into two groups on the basis of whether they came from a family with a drink problem or not.

Solving mathematical problems

Both groups were randomly assigned to two experimental situations, one of which was more stressful and involved solving mathematical problems under timed conditions in public. The two groups were subsequently allowed to drink alcohol in an experimental consumption test or a placebo, depending on which situation they had been randomly assigned.

ÒThe results show that people with parents who have a history of alcohol abuse drink more than others when exposed to stress,Ó says S?derpalm Gordh.

Long term consequences

This behaviour can have negative consequences in the long term. It is no secret that people who consume large quantities of alcohol every time they drink run a higher risk of developing a dependency in the future.

ÒIf alcohol relaxes you when youÕre stressed, then you should try to find other ways of calming yourself down Ð relaxation exercises, for example,Ó says S?derpalm Gordh.

Fact on alcoholism
Alcoholism is usually divided into two categories: type I and type II. Type I is largely dependent on our genesÕ interaction with the environment, for example the people we socialise with or the crises in our lives, while type II involves a considerable genetic risk of developing a drink problem, irrespective of our environment. Around 40% of the Swedish population has a close relative with a history of alcohol abuse.

For further information, please contact:
Anna S?derpalm Gordh, researcher at the Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Sahlgrenska Academy
+46 (0)31 342 3483
+46 (0)734 214 848

Journal: Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behaviour

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