Drinking alcohol may make a person feel happy, but only for a brief period; in the long-run, it does not fill one’s life with contentment. Those who feel chuffed to bits by considering alcohol as a happiness-boosting substance can be in for a big surprise, as a recent study revealed that people who develop drinking problems are less satisfied with life.
People start drinking as a means of self-gratification, to enjoy the moment and be happy, because alcohol acts as a stimulant (provided it is consumed in a quantity that the body can handle, as per the common belief) and gives the desired high.
Attaining happiness after drinking has been a subject of mass debate since long, but it never featured in researches so far. The latest study, in an attempt to explore such possibilities, considered how people’s happiness and drinking habits change over the years.
The research, titled “Can alcohol make you happy? A subjective wellbeing approach,” published in the journal Social Science & Medicine in 2016, was partly funded by the UK Medical Research Council (MRC) and Economic and Social Research Council.
Difficult to ascertain that alcohol causes momentary happiness
Researchers Dr. Baumberg Geiger of the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research, and Dr. George MacKerron of the University of Sussex used an iPhone-based app and a traditional cohort study for their findings. They conducted the first study involving iPhone users who were young and affluent, while for their second study, they looked at individuals between 30 and 42 years of age.
The researchers tried to establish a relationship between alcohol and happiness, taking into account other possible explanations for it. They admitted that it was difficult to ascertain and be absolutely sure that alcohol causes momentary happiness. Moreover, they also admitted that the participants of the study were not representative of the whole population.
The findings said that there was no link between drinking and people’s happiness quotient. It also considered other factors, such as illness, that can affect the well-being of an individual.
Happiness as a factor for framing alcohol regulations
The study would help policymakers frame alcohol regulation accordingly. It does offer some pertinent evidence which should make policymakers consider happiness as a factor when doing cost-benefit analyses of alcohol regulation. It would help them make better and transparent decisions about policies and decide which will benefit the population and which won’t.
Hence, to drink, binge drink or indulge in excessive drinking to derive happiness is just a façade and there is no essence to this belief. Drinking regularly would result in dependence only to spiral into a vicious cycle of drinking sessions and trigger alcoholism. This study should act as a deterrent to those who take to drinking as a means to enhance their happiness level and be oblivious to life’s miseries. It can certainly boomerang and trigger severe alcoholism. The initial euphoria and happiness induced by alcohol can soon turn into a chronic dissatisfaction with life, plunging into deeper discontentment.
Available treatment options
Alcoholism is treatable, but only with timely intervention and commitment to stay in treatment for the entire period. There is a bevy of alcohol treatment centers in the country. There are some of the best alcohol rehab centers in the U.S.A. to choose from.
If a loved one is grappling with alcoholism and you are scouting for alcohol rehab centers, call the 24/7 Alcohol Abuse Helpline at 866-480-6873 for immediate assistance. Treatment Experts can connect you to the alcohol addiction rehab centers where treatment and recovery are always long-term.
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