Ohioans sure are spirituous or rather, they are filled with spirituous liquor.
For the eighth straight year, Ohio set a new record in terms of money spent on booze sales, surpassing the $655 million mark breaking 2005's record by more than $44 million.
The Ohio Department of Commerce said the public's desire for top-shelf liquor, along with a rise in consumption, is primarily responsible for driving the record sales numbers. And the reason for the rise in consumption? Well, some say that when times are tough, the tough ... turn to drinking.
And alcohol certainly is a good distraction. To quote the immortal Homer Simpson: "Alcohol, the cause of and solution to, all of life's problems." However, when you espouse the same philosophy as Homer Simpson, something has probably gone amiss.
Because, as easy as it is to make jokes about alcohol, many families are dealing with alcoholism's devastating effects.
"I do think it's disturbing in the sense that we're seeing more and more younger people that are using alcohol," said Renee Gerome, Firelands Counseling and Recovery Services site manager.
Obviously, the key as with all vices is moderation. And, because many people have had "one of those nights," it can become harder for family members and friends to address loved ones who might have a problem. But those suffering from alcoholism are facing a battle with a serious addiction.
Some symptoms of alcoholism include:
Increased tolerance to the effects of alcohol.
A growing preoccupation with drinking.
Hiding alcohol or sneaking drinks.
Gulping drinks, ordering "double shots" and becoming intoxicated to feel "normal."
If you or a family member display any of these symptoms, it is important to seek help. The Firelands Counseling and Recovery Service can be reached at (419) 663-3737 and is always willing to embrace and help anyone willing to take that first step.