Is your brain triggering the urge to drink?

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JUST ONE MORE: Binge drinking is an addiction.

HAVE you had one tipple too many over Christmas? For many, a little indulgence over the festive period is normal, but what happens when that extra drink turns into one too many?

A professor at the University of Florida has treated thousands of patients for alcohol use for over 15 years and believes that binge drinking, such as at Christmas, can be a result of the chemicals in the brain.

Alcohol releases dopamine giving a happy buzz, but for some, as the brain starts releasing dopamine it is unable to stop and malfunctions, causing the drinker to carry on past the buzz and into intoxication and a compulsion to binge drink can result. This binge drinking can be seen as an addiction and should be treated as such.

Binge drinking is classed as drinking at least five or more drinks for men and four for women, on the same occasion on at least one day in the past 30 days. 

The American Medical Association acknowledged that brains of binge drinkers have a disease but it is still relatively ignored and not seen as a disease in the same way as heart disease or obesity. 

So as we head in to the New Year celebrations, just be aware of the effects drinking can have on you and the people around you.

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