The Classification of Alcoholics PMC

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types of alcoholic

Approximately 22% have a first- or second-degree family member who is also dependent on alcohol. Compared to other types of alcoholics, young adults are less likely to have psychiatric disorders or legal problems. Alcohol is often implicated in exacerbating aggression, and the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) publishes that 40 percent of all violent crimes cite alcohol as a contributing factor. Chronic severe alcoholics suffer from psychiatric disorders more often than other subtypes of alcoholics, including bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety disorders. One such issue is that of a perceived need for professional help and recognition that a problem with alcohol exists.

Intermediate Familial Alcoholics

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They also have high probability of suffering from antisocial personality disorder, depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and bipolar disorder. This group also suffers from high rates of cigarette, Marijuana, and Cocaine addiction. It is determined that roughly 31.5% of alcoholics fall into the category of young adults, which is the largest single group.

Vodka Martini

In initial studies, type I alcoholics frequently exhibited high harm avoidance, low novelty seeking, and high reward dependence (Cloninger 1987a), personality characteristics indicating high levels of anxiety. Type II alcoholics often exhibited a reverse personality profile, with low harm avoidance, high novelty seeking, and low reward dependence. This combination of traits also describes people with antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) (Cloninger 1987b) and is consistent with findings 5 types of alcoholics that type II alcoholics frequently suffer from ASPD (Gilligan et al. 1988). In collecting the study data, the researchers made use of several characteristics of the Swedish social system that allow extensive data collection. In addition, extensive records exist documenting a person’s history of alcohol abuse. Each community has a so-called temperance board that enforces social sanctions for alcohol abuse (e.g., imposes fines) and orders and supervises alcoholism treatment.

Most of these typologies were published by alienists in books and scholarly journals. It would seem logical to begin a discussion of the history of typology with E.M. Jellinek’s classic work on the different “species” of alcoholism (1960a, b), which is widely considered to be the first scientific alcoholism typology.


In 1876 the association established the Quarterly Journal of Inebriety, which, over a period of 38 years, published numerous articles by leading physicians from the United States and abroad about the different forms of alcoholism. Similar societies formed in England, under Norman Kerr’s leadership, and in France, under Valentin-Jacques Magnan’s direction. There are different types of alcohol, each with different effects.

  • Habitual inebriety begins as a “voluntary indulgence” that eventually crosses the line between the physiological and the pathological, resulting in a deterioration of physical and mental abilities.
  • Talking to a qualified therapist can help you get to the root of your condition and devise a means to kick it.
  • Many young adult alcoholics are likely college students who are away from home for the first time, and who are surrounded by a culture that promotes and encourages excessive social drinking.
  • Theories suggest that for certain people drinking has a different and stronger impact that can lead to alcohol use disorder.
  • They often have steady jobs, relationships, decent family incomes, and have accomplished a higher education.
  • About half of this group comes from families with alcohol problems and are likely to suffer from mental disorders.

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