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When Good Drugs Get a Bad Reputation Part III

In When Good Drugs Get a Bad Reputation Parts I & II, we discussed how drugs that have significant therapeutic and medical uses have gotten a bad reputation as a result of people abusing them. This is especially true of marijuana and opiates – both valuable drugs that have an image problem resulting from the high numbers of people who abuse these two substances for recreational or other-than-intended uses. This is a significant problem because the fact of the matter is that many drugs of abuse have legitimate medical uses that could be hampered by the high rates of substance abuse that occurs with any drug that will get a person “high.” But when it comes to good drugs that get a bad name, perhaps the most useful of all abused drugs is alcohol.

Alcoholism is the same thing as addiction because alcohol is simply another type of substance that people abuse. In fact, when many people think of alcohol, they don’t think of the hundreds of utilitarian, medical and other uses for this drug. Instead, they primarily think about people drinking to get intoxicated – a widespread practice in nearly every country in the world. But unlike other useful drugs that have gotten a bad reputation like marijuana and opium, most people don’t understand what the other uses of this substance are.

Antiseptic

Alcohol is one of the most effective antiseptics known – especially in surgical applications. According to Wisegeek.com, a website dedicated to providing public information;

“Ethyl alcohol, more frequently known as grain alcohol, works as an antiseptic by coagulating protein, the primary material that makes up cells. Although alcohol cannot coagulate every single cell, it functions well to inhibit the growth and reproduction of many microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and viruses.” (1)

In fact, alcohol has been used for this exact purpose for centuries – even before people understood precisely why or how it worked.

Medication base and processor

Alcohol serves as the base ingredient for many types of drugs and medications. In fact, without alcohol precursor substances, many of the most powerful drugs we know today might not exist at all.

Household products

Alcohol is in a wide variety of household products. This includes;

  • Cleaning products – window and glass cleaners, carpet and surface cleaners, etc
  • Food products – dye and colorings, processed foods, etc.
  • Hygiene and toiletries – deodorant, shampoo, acne medication

Machinery and engines

Alcohol isn’t just used to create the parts and processed that build and distribute equipment and machinery, it is also used as a fuel – and a very effective one. Alcohol can power everything from a small remote controlled vehicle to large boats and even buses. Additionally, alcohol is needed in order to produce petroleum products – critical ingredients for all transportation, medical and other petroleum based products.

Cooking

Alcohol is used in fine dishes worldwide, and has been used in this way for hundreds of years. However, it should be noted that most alcohol is dissipated when used in cooking.

Unfortunately, despite these incredible uses, most people simply associate alcohol with the consumption of the substance by people looking to alter their state of perception or emotion, or just to “have a good time.” Whatever the case may be, one of America’s most significant public health threats is the abuse of alcohol. And with alcohol related accidents being the number one cause of death for young men in this country, it’s time to recognize that we must educate people about the good – and the bad – effects that alcohol has on our society.

But if you or someone you love is abusing this or other useful substances, it’s time to get help. Call the number at the top of your screen now for a free, confidential consultation. We offer one of the country’s most powerful and effective alcohol addiction treatment programs that can help get you back on your feet in just a few weeks. Call us now to find out for yourself.

(1) Michael Anissimov Why is Alcohol a Good Antiseptic? WiseGeek

About The Contributor
The editorial staff of Recovery First is comprised of addiction content experts from American Addiction Centers. Our editors and medical reviewers have over a decade of cumulative experience in medical content editing and have reviewed thousands... Read More