Factors that Influence People to Drink Alcohol

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People drink alcohol for a variety of different reasons.  Understanding these can help people address any problems they may have. These factors affect people differently and may include the following.

Pressure from friends

Some people, especially teens, may drink because they get pressure from others.  Others may tell them to have a drink and they may not want to look like they are afraid or hesitant to do it.  Also, sometimes there is no overt pressure to do it but everyone else is drinking so they do it to fit in.  If they see everyone else order a beer, then they may feel like it is the right thing to do. 

They like how it makes them feel

Unfortunately, a lot of people use alcohol as an escape.  They may have difficulty in their real lives and use it as a way to get away from reality for a little while.  Of course, reality always comes back and a drinking problem can make that reality be even worse.

They associate it with a certain activity

Sometimes people feel like they always have to drink if they are watching a football game or out at a restaurant with their friends.  They may feel like it just goes together and thus they do it.

They have an addictive personality

Sometimes people have personality characteristics that lead them more open to getting addicted to something.  This may play a part in why it sometimes runs in families.

It is there

Sometimes people drink simply because the alcohol is there.  If they are at a party and the alcohol is free, for instance, then they may feel like it would be a waste not to drink.  If they have it at home, then they may just go and get it. 

They think it makes them seem “cool”

Some people associate drinking with being cool.  This might be especially true for a young adult who has just gained the legal right to drink.  They may not understand the need to restrain themselves and just “go for it.”  They may think that others will only see them as cool if they partake in this activity.  They also may think of it as an adult thing to do.

They grew up around it

If they always saw their family drinking, then they may be more likely to do so.  Also, it is more prevalent in some cultures.

A lot of people drink, some far too much.  The different reasons for this, which are outlined above, are often in different concentrations for different people.  If you or someone you know has a drinking problem you should take the necessary steps to address it.

More about this author: Suzanne Rose

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