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Alcoholism is a disease which involves the whole person: physically, mentally, psychologically, and spiritually. The significant characteristics of the disease are that it is primary, progressive, chronic and fatal. However, the progress of alcoholism can be halted and the patient can recover. Alcoholism is a distinct disease with a descernable, predictable pattern of pathology. The cause of alcoholism is unknown. All kinds of people from diverse backgrounds and with many different personalities become alcoholics. The disease causes its victims to behave in destructive and antisocial ways.

Using a simple feeling chart, Vernon Johnson in I'll Quit Tomorrow, has developed a four-step process that describes the personality changes that occur in the alcoholic. The first stage is psychological and involves how the alcoholic learns the mood swing. Alcohol is a drug that makes the person feel good. The result of drinking is to shift the person's mood toward the euphoric end of the feeling chart. In the second phase, drinking now has a specific purpose--the drinker is seeking the mood swing. Harmful dependence is the third phase. Before this stage, alcohol had only a beneficial effect on the drinker. At this stage, alcohol has developed some negative consequences as well. In the final phase, alcoholic dependency has been established and the person drinks to feel normal. Alcoholics at this stage are no longer drinking to feel good and have fun. Drinking alcohol has become essential for the drinker to achieve a normal feeling state.

Johnson's book shares the experiences and knowledge gained from the many participants in the alcoholic recovery program at Johnson Institute. The disease is tracked and discussed in detail. Alcoholics ultimately destroy their physical, emotional, spiritual and mental life if the disease is not arrested in time. The disease is typified by progressive mental mismanagement and an increasi...

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Alcoholism. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 15:10, April 21, 2019, from