These five subtypes differ from one another in who they affect, how common they are, their severity, and other identifying characteristics. There is no subtype of alcohol dependence that is ‘safe’ enough to ignore. Alcohol use and addiction grow worse over time and can have significant effects on a person’s health, relationships, five types of alcoholics and general quality of life. Understanding the different subtypes of alcoholism can better help people identify a drinking problem and determine the most effective methods for alcohol treatment. This alcoholism type represents 19.5% of alcoholics in the US and includes mostly those who are middle-aged.

Due to their genetic predisposition to alcoholism, they tend to drink heavily and may experience periods of abstinence followed by relapse. It’s important to note that functional alcoholism is a serious condition that can have devastating consequences if left untreated. Despite their ability to «keep it together» on the surface, functional alcoholics are still at risk for a variety of health problems, including liver disease, heart disease, and certain types of cancer. Additionally, their behavior can be unpredictable and dangerous, both to themselves and to those around them. It’s important to note that this type of alcoholic may not yet have developed a physical dependence on alcohol, but may display other signs of addiction. For example, they may experience a loss of control over their drinking, which can lead to risky behavior and poor decision-making.

Young Adult Subtype:

Treatment options include detox, counseling, and support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous. 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. In addition, this type of alcoholism can co-occur with smoking cigarettes, marijuana, and/or cocaine abuse. In the large majority of cases, functional alcoholics seem to have a ‘normal’ life, though, behind the scenes, this can be a very different story. However, these individuals are likely to have already been drinking for a long period, perhaps since they were very young, and this alone can cause serious health issues later in life.

Call now to connect with a treatment provider and start your recovery journey. Genetics can influence how the body processes alcohol, leading some individuals to feel its effects more strongly than others. This increased sensitivity can lead to an increased risk for addiction and dependence. Dealing with a family member’s addiction can be overwhelming and stressful. One way to take action is to regularly have informal talks about your loved one’s drinking.

Why Is Alcoholism Typology Important?

Additionally, they may have a family history of alcoholism, which can increase their risk of developing an alcohol use disorder. While some young adult alcoholics may be able to quit drinking on their own, many require professional help to address underlying emotional issues that contribute to their alcohol use disorder. Alcohol addiction is as dangerous as opioid addiction or any other type of addiction. Resurgence is a leading addiction treatment center that offers an inpatient treatment program, outpatient alcohol rehab programs, sober living, aftercare programming, and more.

  • Severity is based on the number of criteria a person meets based on their symptoms—mild (2–3 criteria), moderate (4–5 criteria), or severe (6 or more criteria).
  • The young adult subtype is the most prevalent subtype, making up 31.5% of people who are alcohol dependent.
  • We understand that seeking treatment for alcohol addiction can be a difficult decision, and we provide a supportive environment for individuals to begin their journey toward recovery.
  • When seeking treatment, they tend to turn to social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists and private physicians.
  • Around 19.5 percent of the alcoholic population in the United States falls into the functional alcoholic subtype.

Alcoholism is a huge problem in the United States, and these issues must be addressed appropriately. There are many types of alcoholics which complicate the situation as alcoholism is not a one-type-fits-all. Sub-categories are important and reveal a true representation of alcoholism and negative drinking patterns within the U.S. This means that seeking suitable addiction treatment as soon as possible is of maximum priority for those struggling with alcohol addiction.

Intermediate familial alcoholics

Citalopram is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant medication that’s used to treat depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. If you or someone you know is exhibiting any of these signs, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. Alcoholism is a treatable disease, but it requires professional intervention and support. Reach out to a healthcare provider, counselor, or addiction specialist for guidance on how to get started on the path to recovery. Hemingways are alcoholics who drink excessively but they seem no different to others whether they’re drinking or not.

five types of alcoholics

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. Most likely what a person pictures when the term alcoholic is used, the chronic severe alcoholic subtype only accounts for about 9 percent of the entire US alcoholic population. A chronic severe alcoholic likely started drinking and struggling with alcohol-related issues and problematic drinking at a young age and is currently middle-aged. This subtype also battles antisocial personality disorder at high rates and regularly has issues with the law and therefore criminal or legal troubles as well.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Periodic inebriety often takes the form of temporary insanity, in which the drinker’s behavior is characterized by mania, violence, or impulsive criminal behavior. In 1876 the association established the Quarterly Journal of Inebriety, which, over a period of 38 years, published numerous articles by leading physicians from the United States and abroad about the different forms of alcoholism. Similar societies formed in England, under Norman Kerr’s leadership, and in France, under Valentin-Jacques Magnan’s direction.

five types of alcoholics