Better known as alcoholism, alcohol addiction is a disease that can affect a person at any phase of their life. According to modern researches, 12.7% of the US citizens have been flagged as alcohol addicts in the year 2017.
There have been several factors pinpointed by experts which might predispose an individual to alcoholism: them being race, genetics, sex or socioeconomics. However, a single cause has not been discovered yet.
Impact of alcohol on your body starts the very moment you take a sip. Even though a glass of wine during dinner, occasionally does not do any harm, the growing effects of drinking beer, spirits, and wine can be a cause for concern.
Influence of Alcohol on the Human Body
Excessive consumption of alcohol can release deviant digestive enzymes produced by our pancreas. Overgrowth of these enzymes can cause a long-term inflammation known as pancreatitis.
Long-term drinking can cause chronic liver inflammation known as cirrhosis. This inflammation destroys the liver tissues. Once it is completely damaged, the liver is unable to eradicate the toxic substances from our bodies. Alcohol Related Liver Diseases or ARLD such as cirrhosis are life-threatening, and women run higher risks at developing alcoholic liver diseases. This is because their bodies are likely to absorb more alcohol and require even longer periods to process the same as compared to men.
Levels of Blood Sugar
- When pancreas and liver are not functioning properly, a person runs risks of experiencing hypoglycemia or low blood sugar. This is because the pancreas regulates insulin in our bodies as a response to glucose. In other words, one can suffer from hyperglycemia as well when the pancreas prevents the body from the production of adequate insulin for utilizing sugar.
- People suffering from diabetes are recommended not to consume alcohol in excess because the body will not be able to balance and manage the blood sugar levels. This will lead to further complexities.
Central Nervous System
- Alcohol has a harsh impact on the central nervous system as well. It can alleviate communication between your body and brain which might lead to slurred speech, blurred vision and incoherent state.
- One may have a difficult time balancing themselves since the cerebellum present in the brain begins malfunctioning. Therefore, never drive after drinking.
- As the consumption enhances and more damage is caused in your nervous system, you start feeling numbness in your hands and feet along with an abnormal tingling sensation.
- Drinking can cause severe damage to one’s cerebrum as well which is the center of thinking and intelligence. You stop making rational choices and are unable to think distinctly.
- With time, the frontal lobe of the brain can get damaged. This area of the brain is the center for short-term memory, emotions, judgment, and other significant roles.
Other Complications Rooting from Alcohol Dependency
Alcoholics seem to develop a physical and emotional dependency on alcohol. Owing to this, alcohol withdrawal can be complex and life-threatening. Some of the symptoms include anxiety, high blood pressure, nervousness, irregular palpitations, heavy sweating, hallucinations, seizures, and delirium.
The more one drinks, the tissues in their digestive tract gets damaged, thereby preventing their intestines from digesting food and absorbing the vitamins or other nutrients. Often, dehydration and constipation lead to hemorrhoids and ulcers among alcoholics. The former causes internal bleeding in the anus and rectum region while the latter can be fatal by introducing cancer cells in the mouth, if not treated from an early stage. These people run risks of developing cancer in their mouth, colon, throat, liver, and esophagus as well. Consequently, malnutrition might occur. Other issues include:
- Feeling of heaviness in the abdomen
- Diarrhea and painful stools
The severity of addiction and how frequently one drinks varies from one person to another. While few binge drinks and remains sober for the rest of the day, others are into heavy consumption. This results in heart attacks, cerebral attacks, and strokes when the heart is unable to pump blood into the brain and other parts of the body.
All the aforementioned factors along with psychological and behavioral aspects have a probability of contributing to having this disease. Divorces and dysfunctional marriages were cited as the reason for 21% alcoholism cases in the years 2017 and 2018.
Most of the influences that drinking have on our body stated above are fatal. Therefore, it is important that you or whoever is a victim of alcoholism, seek assistance with immediate effect. This can save the lives of millions.