Alcohol is a drug that affects every body system. Alcoholism is a primary, chronic disease with genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. It is characterized by impaired control over drinking, preoccupation with the drug alcohol, use of alcohol despite adverse consequences, and distortions of thinking, most notably denial. Each of these symptoms may be continuous or periodic. Health problems associated with alcoholism include poor nutrition, memory disorders, muscle weakness, heart rhythm disturbances, anemia, decreased immunity to infections, gastrointestinal inflammation and irritation, liver disease, low blood sugar, high blood fat content, and weakened bones (ASAM, 2003). Along with individual physical problems, alcoholism also affects relationships with other individuals. Depression, unemployment, child abuse, homelessness, murder, suicide, injury, and violent crimes are more likely to occur with alcoholism (ASAM, 2003). There is no known cause for alcoholism, but a number of factors work together to cause a person to become an alcoholic. Factors include genetics, environment, social economic status, sex, and ethnicity (ASAM, 2003). .
Advertising is defined as any openly sponsored offering of goods, services, or ideas through any medium of communication (Phillip, 2001). Advertising used to be informational and essentially told you that a product existed, where it could be found, and what it was used for. Today, advertisers see advertising as a way to talk about a product's status and attributes (Phillip, 2001). Advertisements pertaining to alcohol from a popular magazine were used in a data analysis study. A linkage was found between the esthetics portrayed by the ads as the reason for consuming alcohol products. A recent survey from USA today found that teens say ads have a greater influence on their desires to drink in general than on their desire to buy a particular brand of alcohol (Horovitz, 1997).