News broke this week that scientists are developing an alcohol busting drug that has the ability to sober a person up in seconds. No alcohol withdrawal symptoms or detoxification needed. The drug works by producing metabolizing enzymes that reduce the levels of alcohol in the blood. Perfect you may think – fewer hospital admissions for those who have drunk too much, no more drink driving, no more hangover in the morning!
But what will such a drug do for the number of people suffering from addiction? If you remove the negative consequences from drinking, then drinking no longer becomes a problem to these people – they can drink twice as much, twice as often and know that taking a pill will solve any ill effect. This of course does not allow for the damage being done to the body, after all, this alcohol busting drug is an as yet unknown quantity when it comes to human consumption, thus far it has only been tested on mice. Will the medication stop liver damage or prevent things such as Korsakoff’s Syndrome?
I realise the drug is not being marketed as a wonder cure, but my concern is that the culture of taking a pill masks the problems caused by alcohol addiction in the first place. Between Antabuse and the alcohol busting drug, there is less and less emphasis on addressing the core reasons why a dependence is developing – it is merely putting a plaster on the problem.
What do you think about the alcohol busting drug? Do you think it is a good idea? We’d love to hear your thoughts.