Any amount of alcohol use is currently considered harmful:
- Alcohol causes over 5 million deaths worldwide through injuries, cancer, liver disease among others.
- Alcohol is also responsible for contributing to over 200 diseases including heart disease, cancer, and high blood pressure.
- Drinks such as bottled beer, wines and spirits; and local brew such as chang’aa, busaa, and muratina all contain alcohol.
In Kenya 30% of people use alcohol mostly youth In addition to poor physical health, alcohol use contributes to:
- Poor mental health e.g. depression, suicide
- Job loss
- Broken relationships with family, friends, and workmates
- School drop-outs
- Involvement in risky behavior e.g. careless driving & risky sexual behavior.
People who use lots of alcohol will show some of these signs:
- Shaking, sweating, anxiety
- Neglect of self-care
- Neglect of responsibilities at the workplace and to family
- Recurrent financial difficulties
- Poor relationships with family, friends, workmates
Help is available:
- With appropriate treatment recovery from harmful alcohol use is possible
- The early seeking of help improves the chances of recovery
- There are several facilities in the country accredited by NACADA to offer rehabilitation services. See http://nacada.go.ke/?page_id=156 for a list of rehabilitation centers across the country.
- A combination of counseling and medication offered by a team of mental health care workers.
- Treatment may be conducted in an in-patient or out-patient setting depending on the individual needs of the client.
- The longer one remains in treatment the better the outcomes.