Alcoholism: Is it in Our DNA?

alcoholism dnaAre our genes responsible for whether or not we develop a problem when it comes to drinking alcohol? The answer is, “Yes and no.”

According to research, about half of the risk for alcohol use disorder, often referred to as alcoholism or alcohol abuse, can be attributed to genetics. This would explain why problem drinking seems to run in families. Further, there is no single “alcoholism gene.” As with most other diseases, multiple genes play a part in whether or not a person will develop an alcohol use disorder such as alcoholism.

Environmental factors, and gene and environmental interactions are responsible for the balance of the risk of developing alcoholism. Of course, if a person who is genetically predisposed to an alcohol abuse disorder never takes a drink, a problem would not develop.

Are you concerned about the amount of alcohol a loved one drinks? Visit to learn more about moderate drinking and the signs and symptoms of alcohol abuse.

About Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers
Every year Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment helps thousands of adults and teens get their life back on track and gives renewed hope to those who care about them. With 50 years of treatment experience, our specialists take the time to understand of the specific needs of each individual. We then develop a customized treatment plan with recommendations for the most appropriate care based on an individual's substance abuse and mental health history. As the largest provider of alcohol and drug abuse treatment in Illinois, Gateway has 11 treatment centers throughout the state. Gateway outpatient and residential substance abuse treatment programs are not one-size fits all, but unique treatment plans that give an individual the highest chance for a successful outcome. With insurance acceptance and a track record of success, Gateway Treatment Centers help thousands of individual’s successfully complete treatment each year, and find the hope they need to live again.

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