Published On: April 3, 2024Categories: Alcohol Addiction, Alcohol RehabComments Off on April is National Alcohol Awareness Month

April is National Alcohol Awareness Month. This special day was first established as a time to talk about recovery and treatment for alcohol abuse by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) in 1987.

This NJRC article is about National Alcohol Awareness Month, education, advocacy, and outreach to people with alcohol addiction and their loved ones. 

Why Was National Alcohol Awareness Month Started?

An organization called the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) was one of the very first groups of its kind to work toward raising awareness about alcohol use disorders. Founded in 1944, by Marty Mann, NCADD has been very influential in getting institutions from the American Medical Association to the National Institutes of Health involved in the fight against alcohol abuse. 

How Marty Mann Helped Raise Alcohol Awareness in America

Marty Mann is perhaps best known by Alcoholics Anonymous history buffs as the first female member of AA. Marty found sobriety in 1939, but she didn’t stop there. She dedicated the rest of her life to raising awareness about alcohol addiction and helping people who suffer from it become more visible. 

When Marty got sober, alcoholism was not yet recognized as a disease. The general opinion was that people addicted to alcohol, or anything else simply lacked willpower and discipline. The work she did helped change that, and thereby helped generations of people with drinking problems get the help they need and deserve. 

The Solution to Alcohol Addiction Begins with Awareness

So, why you might ask, is there so much emphasis on alcohol awareness? The answer is simple. You can’t hope to begin to solve a problem until you see it in the full light of day and you understand it properly. The U.S. has had a fractious and chaotic relationship with booze from the very beginning. Alcoholism came to a head in the late 1800s and early 1900s when America’s temperance movement gained steam and influence.

You might say the temperance leagues, made up mostly of women of alcoholic husbands, and the teetotalers (sober folks) were the first to raise alcohol awareness in this country. Their efforts ultimately led to Prohibition in the U.S. The 18th Amendment outlawing alcohol possession and consumption (except for medical purposes) was ratified on January 16, 1919, and went into effect one year later on January 17, 1920.

From Prohibition to Modern Alcohol Use Disorder Treatment

While Prohibition itself is widely seen as a failed social experiment, it did change the way Americans looked at alcohol. It put a process in motion that would take decades to play out, but eventually, we went from a country where it was normal to drink on the job every day to where we are today — a place where even the old “three-martini lunch” is mostly frowned upon. 

So, how did we get here? That’s a long story so we’ll have to summarize. But Prohibition was with us through the ‘Roaring 20s’ right up to the stock market crash of 1929 that set off The Great Depression. America went through some tumultuous times back then. Luckily, AA was founded in 1935. Between AA giving people hope for overcoming alcoholism for the first time and the first drug and alcohol rehabs being established — alcohol awareness turned a corner. 

Alcohol Awareness in the 21st Century 

Public awareness of alcohol and alcohol addiction has traveled light-years since the early days of AA and the first alcohol treatment centers. Today, most people are aware that alcoholism is a disease of the mind, but that it can be put into remission with the right substance use disorder treatment and a sustainable recovery lifestyle. 

That doesn’t mean there isn’t still lots of work to be done though. People suffering from alcohol addiction and their loved ones still need help. There is no definitive “cure” for alcohol addiction yet, so advocacy, treatment, and awareness efforts must continue to let people find the help they need. Alcohol awareness can also go a long way toward preventing people from falling down the road of alcoholism in the first place. 

Alcohol Addiction Does Not Have to Rule Your Life

We’re here to tell you there is a way out of the cycle of alcohol abuse. Whether you’re the one who could use help with a drinking problem, or it’s someone you love — North Jersey Recovery Center is here for you. All it takes is a phone call to turn the page to a brighter chapter in your life. 

The alcohol use disorder specialists at NJRC are available to help 24 hours a day. Call or chat with us online and together, we will find a solution that works for you both. 

The healing can’t begin until the conversation does. 

Let’s talk.  (877) 790-5873