Alcoholism coupled with mental illness can be devastating, says Muktangan De-addiction Centre chief | pune news | Hindustan Times
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Alcoholism coupled with mental illness can be devastating, says Muktangan De-addiction Centre chief

Reacting to the shocking case of a 29-year-old, Parang Kshirsagar, allegedly murdering his parents in the city, Mukta Puntambekar, deputy director of Muktangan Mitra and project director of Muktangan De-addiction Centre, said that extreme violence could be the result of a psychiatric problem compounded with alcoholism.

pune Updated: Dec 07, 2017 14:58 IST
Anjali Shetty
Anjali Shetty
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Alcohol,Murder
Mukta Puntambekar, deputy director of Muktangan Mitra and project director of Muktangan De-addiction Centre.(HT PHOTO)

Reacting to the shocking case of a 29-year-old, Parang Kshirsagar, allegedly murdering his parents in the city, Mukta Puntambekar, deputy director of Muktangan Mitra and project director of Muktangan De-addiction Centre, said that extreme violence could be the result of a psychiatric problem compounded with alcoholism. Excerpts from her conversation with Anjali Shetty.

Do you think provoked Parang’s behaviour has some relationship to the fact that he is an alcoholic?

Psychiatric problems compounded with alcoholism can lead to extreme aggression, especially during withdrawal. Such an extreme step is unlikely from someone who is just an alcoholic. Maybe it was a personality disorder clubbed with withdrawal pangs that led to the situation.

Addictions can affect one’s brain very badly. Extreme aggression and many-a-times, harming others can be thoughts that come as withdrawal symptoms. I remember one such case around a decade ago, when an individual who was suffering from withdrawal symptoms after being treated, killed his father because he refused to give him money. When withdrawal symptoms are severe and clubbed with a mental disorder, it becomes difficult for them to think rationally, thus leading to such extreme steps.

What should be done to ensure that such a situation does not arise?

Early diagnosis and a lookout for symptoms is one of the ways to help prevent such situations. Symptoms of a mental disorder can be spotted during early childhood and range from telling lies, showing extreme aggression to having sour social relationships and engaging in physical violence. Parents need to be observant of such symptoms and immediately take help. Unfortunately, going to a psychiatrist or counsellor is still has a social stigma associated to it in our society.

How does one deal with such situations or what could be done to prevent the same early on?

Basically, we should create a lot of awareness on addiction and information on the ill-effects of addiction should be given to children in school. Students from Class 5 onwards should be exposed to the ill-effects of addiction. Also, authorities need to look into the easy availability of alcohol and other materials that can get one addicted. Also, if parents are into social drinking and if drinking is made socially acceptable around a child, he or she will never know the bad effects of it.

First Published: Dec 07, 2017 14:57 IST