In this module you learned some basic principles about alcohol, alcohol use, alcohol misuse, and alcohol use disorders. After reviewing information about relative frequency of alcohol and/or other substance use disorders, we explored basic principles concerning the pharmacology of alcohol. This led to an exploration of the effects of alcohol on the human body and behavior. The effects we learned about included the short- and long-term effects of acute and chronic use of alcohol. Next, we turned our attention to what matters regarding early initiation of alcohol use (during puberty and adolescence) and how early exposure can result in lifelong consequences. One factor that tends to promote alcohol misuse during adolescence and emerging adulthood was next in our list of topics: how social media (Twitter in particular) may play a role by influencing both social norms and social learning. Finally, we examined one source of evidence concerning the significance of drinking contexts in determining drinking consequences—we looked at this issue in light of data about drinking and the perpetration of sexual aggression.
You are now ready to review some of the key terms related to substance use disorders introduced in this book.