BEHS 364 Alcohol In U.S. Society

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BEHS 364 Alcohol In U.S. Society

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BEHS 364 Alcohol In U.S. Society

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Course Code: BEHS364
University: University Of Maryland Global Campus

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Country: United States

Question
Answer each question in a small essay
1. Compare and contrast the health effects and regulations approaches to tobacco control with alcohol control in US.
2. We discussed the debate over alcoholism and whether it is a disease such that it is a disorder or illness that the individual is not responsible for having contracted or whether it is a label by society that is attached to a pattern of drinking that is characterized by personal and social dysfunctions. Which of these views do you accept and what is the support for your position?
3. We examined different models of alcohol abuse and some risk factors. Two predominant factors are age and gender. Why are these factors significant?
4. What role do we as society play in fostering a “wet” environment for alcoholism or alcohol use disorder and what steps can be taken to effect change so that alcohol is only used by all in moderation?
Answer

Compare and contrast the health effects and regulations approaches to tobacco control with alcohol control in US
In the last one decade, there has been several significant changes made in taxation of cigarette. Heavy taxation has been imposed on cigarette packs both at the federal and state jurisdictions. Legislators mainly quote public health reasons for the continuous increase in taxation of tobacco (Abuse and Administration, 2016).  It is true that tobacco use has negative health effects not only to the users but also to those around them. The move to heavily tax tobacco has led to decreased use (Howe and Kenny, 2018). The increased cost has made some to reduce the amount of tobacco use while discouraging others not to start using it. Compared to tobacco, alcohol has received less taxation measures. Where such measures were carried out, the taxation was modest compared to the one for tobacco. This raises questions why alcohol would not receive high taxation. It would be wise for the authorities to impose heavy taxes on alcohol too to discourage its use. This is because there are many ills associated with alcohol abuse. Some of these are negative effects to health while others are repercussions of poor judgment, for instance domestic violence.
Alcoholism
Alcoholism is a disorder. This because it affects the reward system of the brain. Consumption of alcohol leads to release of the neurotransmitter dopamine which is responsible for the state of utopia that an alcoholic finds themselves in. Continuous release of this neurotransmitter every time a person drinks leads to addiction (Wise and Koob, 2014) Alcoholism would not be classified as a disease since it does not have a pathological origin. It is simply a disorder that arises form addiction.
Age and Gender in Alcoholism
We live in a society with social norms. Social norms are unwritten rules that guide the way human beings behave. Traditionally, drinking was predominantly a habit associated with men (Wise and Koob, 2014). It was unusual to encounter a lady drinking alcohol. Although things have significantly changed, this norm still applies and more men than women consume alcohol. Age is another important factor. Most jurisdictions prohibit someone to consume alcohol unless they are 18 years of age. At 18, one is deemed old enough to make decisions on their own.
Role of Society in Encouraging Alcoholism
The contemporary society encourages alcoholism in several ways. One, there is so much alcohol production. In addition, alcoholic beverages are advertised in an aggressive manner (Everitt and Robbins, 2016). The environment is saturated with places that one can drink. This makes it favorable for people to consume alcohol. In addition to this, the price of alcohol is relatively cheap which makes it affordable to most people. One measure to reduce alcohol consumption is imposing significant tax levies on alcoholic beverages. Such a move would make alcohol less affordable to a significant proportion of the population. It would also discourage those who have not started drinking from starting. This way, most people will consume alcohol in moderation.
References
Abuse, S., & Administration, M. H. S. (2016).  National Survey on Drug Use and Health.
Everitt, B. J., & Robbins, T. W. (2016). Drug addiction: updating actions to habits to compulsions ten years on (pp. 12-32). Routledge.
Howe, W. M., & Kenny, P. J. (2018). Drug Addiction: Mechanisms of Nicotine Dependence (pp. 34-39). Routledge.
Wise, R. A., & Koob, G. F. (2014). The development and maintenance of drug addiction. Routledge. 

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