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South Oaks Hospital Raises Awareness About The Effects of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism on Children - Children of Alcoholics Week Week of February l3th-l9th
(January 26, 2011) The public is generally aware of the potential harm of excessive alcohol use and alcoholism. But many people do not realize those hurt most by alcohol abuse and alcoholism often don't drink---they are the children of alcoholic (COA) parents.
Children of alcoholics are two to four times more likely than other children to become addicted to alcohol themselves. Research shows that a combination of factors account for the increased alcohol abuse risks for COA's, including the following: possible inherited genetic vulnerability to addiction; poor family communication; poor role modeling; and the stresses of living in a family lacking stability, predictability and clearly defined roles for all family members. We know that these consequences affect children of addicts in the same way.
This year, the week of February l3th is observed as Children of Alcoholics Week. This focus provides an opportunity to celebrate the recovery of many children of all ages who have received the help they needed to heal from the pain and losses suffered in their childhood, and it offers hope to those still suffering from the adverse impact of parental alcohol and drug addiction. The most important message for COA's is that they are not responsible for the problems of adults in their homes and that their own lives can be different and better than the lives of their alcohol-abusing parents/guardians.
Help is available:
In cooperation with South Oaks Hospital, visit our Prevention Resource Center at www.liprc.org
National Association for Children of Alcoholics
1-888-554-COAS or www.nacoa.org
Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc.
1-888-4AL-ANON or www.al-anon.alateen.org
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Mary Jeanne Corea