According to statistics from 2013, 25% of people 18 years of age and older admitted to recently binge drinking. This simple statistic reveals that people of all ages are drinking and that many seem to be taking in too much alcohol at a time.
The reality is that this type of behavior can lead to habit forming tendencies. Alcoholism, which affects almost 17 million people in the United States, is a disease that we are still attempting to treat efficiently and effectively.
When groundbreaking and promising studies occur, researchers and medical professionals alike express new levels of excitement at the potential positive benefits. Such is the case with OSU6162, a drug that has been recently discovered as a potential treatment for alcohol addiction.
Research: Where, What, And Whom
Through combined efforts of the Sweden-based Sahlgrenska Academy and the Karolinska Institutet a new drug might be available to assist in the treatment of people addicted to alcohol: OSU6162.
Pia Steensland, the co-author of both studies, mentions that her inspiration is rooted in the notion that alcoholism perpetuates human suffering. With goals to continue working to alleviate the woes of alcohol abuse, the professor has fully dedicated herself to unearthing more about the medication’s potential.
Before diving into in-depth information about OSU6162, we must first understand how alcohol affects the brain.
How Alcoholism Starts
When alcohol is consumed, a pleasurable response occurs in the brain, releasing dopamine. Dopamine is the same chemical released during sex, while exercising, or when eating delicious foods.
Once a person recognizes a pleasurable result, his or her body often craves more. To the detriment of many, the reward system in the brain is desensitized as increased levels of alcohol are consumed on a regular basis.
The result is a person needing more alcohol to produce the desired dopamine levels. A level of euphoria can be reached, but at the expense of ingesting toxic levels of alcohol. Once a person has reached a point of drinking alcohol to maintain dopamine levels, the onset of addiction has ensued.
But how does all of this correlate to OSU6162?
Clinical Study: Promising Results
Researchers attempted to discover if OSU6162 could reduce cravings in people dependent on alcohol. In order to do this, they tested two groups: one was given a placebo, while the other was treated with OSU6162 in a two-week clinical study.
When both groups were regularly exposed to situations that were agreed would inspire cravings for alcohol, their behaviors and desires were reported.
The group taking OSU6162 reported to have less of a craving after one drink of alcohol. In addition, this group said that they did not enjoy the first drink of alcohol, whereas the placebo group reported to intensely like the initial sip.
Steensland documented that the most interesting result was that people with weak impulse control actually responded the best to OSU6162. In other words, those most at risk for relapse after abstaining from alcohol were the people who reaped the most benefits.
How Soon Until It’s Available?
Despite the positive points found in the study, it is difficult to get a drug approved for specific treatment. A drug can only be marketed after extensive research has been gathered and positive evidence of its benefits is provided.
Therefore, more information about OSU6162 is needed before moving forward. Thankfully, new forms of medications and treatments are being sought out for addiction treatment, and many of the results are encouraging.
Get The Help You Deserve
Drinking alcohol disguises itself as a fun activity that provides an outlet for release and relaxation, but if people are regularly resorting to drinking, a dangerous habit can form.
If you know someone who has become addicted to alcohol, it is important to pursue treatment options. Tried and true approaches for plans for a successful recovery do exist. Contact us today at AlcoholTreatment.net to begin your recovery journey.