The social problems arising from alcoholism are serious, caused by the pathological changes in the brain and the intoxicating effects of alcohol.   Alcohol abuse is associated with an increased risk of committing criminal offences, including child abuse , domestic violence , rape , burglary and assault .  Alcoholism is associated with loss of employment ,  which can lead to financial problems. Drinking at inappropriate times, and behavior caused by reduced judgment, can lead to legal consequences, such as criminal charges for drunk driving  or public disorder, or civil penalties for tortious behavior, and may lead to a criminal sentence. An alcoholic's behavior and mental impairment, while drunk, can profoundly affect those surrounding them and lead to isolation from family and friends. This isolation can lead to marital conflict and divorce , or contribute to domestic violence . Alcoholism can also lead to child neglect , with subsequent lasting damage to the emotional development of the alcoholic's children.  For this reason, children of alcoholic parents can develop a number of emotional problems. For example, they can become afraid of their parents, because of their unstable mood behaviors. In addition, they can develop considerable amount of shame over their inadequacy to liberate their parents from alcoholism. As a result of this failure, they develop wretched self-images, which can lead to depression. 
For youth in the first stage of alcohol use (having access but not having yet used alcohol), preventive measures are used. Therefore, limiting access to alcohol or other drugs, addressing any risk factors of the youth or family, as well as optimal parental supervision and expression regarding expectations are often recommended. The approach to those who have experimented with alcohol should not be minimized by mental-health professionals, since infrequent use can progress to the more serious stages of alcohol use if not addressed. Therefore, professionals recommend that the youth be thoroughly educated about the effects and risks of alcohol, that fair but firm limits be set on the use of alcohol, and that the user be referred for brief counseling, a self-help group, and/or family support group. Teens who have progressed to the more advanced stages of alcoholism are typically treated intensively, using a combination of the medical, individual, and familial interventions already described.