Effects Of Alcohol On The Body

Many people enjoy an alcoholic beverage from time to time. However, when drinking alcohol becomes a problem, it is time to seek immediate help. For some people, the move from moderate recreational use to chronic alcohol abuse can be something that they never even notice. As their frequency and quantity of consumption increases, numerous problems begin to present themselves.

Unfortunately, for the alcoholic, these problems are often ignored or not even apparent. There are a number of concerns regarding the excessive use of alcohol and this not only applies to the individual’s inability to function properly while under the influence, but also the short and long-term effects of alcohol on the body and brain, especially for frequent users.

Short-Term Effects Alcohol On The Body

Alcohol is considered to be a depressant of the central nervous system and as the alcohol enters the bloodstream it can easily permeate every cell of the body. This widespread absorption of alcohol can have toxic effects, especially when alcohol is consumed in large quantities. There are a number of factors that can play a role in why an individual becomes intoxicated and the level or rate at which intoxication takes place.

For example, after a large meal, alcohol is absorbed more slowly which will reduce the level of alcohol present in the blood. Regardless of how slowly the alcohol is consumed or absorbed, there can still be serious consequences of excessive alcohol consumption. Consuming large quantities of alcohol can lead to unconsciousness, alcohol poisoning, and even death. Excessive consumption of alcohol can also cause death when the individual vomits and is too intoxicated to regain consciousness. This can lead to death from asphyxiation.

Effects Of Alcohol On The Body

Alcohol has a number of effects on the body, including the fluid located inside the ears. This fluid undergoes a change in viscosity when alcohol is consumed. The endolymph or fluid moves around the cupula and helps send the brain information regarding the mind’s orientation.

However, under the effects of alcohol, with the viscosity of this fluid changed, the signals can become more exaggerated and the movements of the body are overcompensated. This can result in dizziness, which is commonly referred to as “the spins.” Of course, the amount of alcohol consumed and the blood alcohol content will have a direct impact on how the body is affected.

For example, an individual might have poor motor control which can vary depending on the level of alcohol present in their system. However, it is important to realize that the effects of alcohol can have a wide variance depending on the particular individual. Some people seem much more susceptible to its effects than others and will succumb to lowered inhibitions, poor motor control, dulled senses, and other alcohol-related effects much sooner.

Long-Term Alcohol Effects On The Body

Obviously, the amount of alcohol consumed and its concentration will also have a big impact on how quickly someone becomes inebriated. The long-term effects of consuming alcohol can vary depending on whether the individual consumed only moderate amounts of alcohol or was involved in chronic abuse. The long-term abuse of alcohol can have severe physical consequences, including alcoholism, liver disease, pancreatitis, malabsorption, heart disease, and even cancer. In fact, central nervous system damage can occur when alcohol is abused for an extended period of time.

Other long-term effects of alcohol on the body can include organ damage. In fact, infants and young adults are especially prone to damage when exposed to the toxic effects of repeated alcohol exposure. FAS, or fetal alcohol syndrome, can occur when an unborn baby is exposed to alcohol. The developing brain is especially vulnerable to the effects of alcohol and can be permanently damaged when the mother consumes alcohol during pregnancy.

Consuming excessive amounts of alcohol over a long period of time can have serious consequences. Not only can there be permanent physical damage done to various organs, but the addictive nature of alcohol can create a dependence that is hard to overcome. The effects and symptoms of withdrawal from alcohol can be very much like other types of drugs. In fact, a person who has become dependent on alcohol will typically need extensive help in order to overcome their addiction and learn to live free from their dependency.

While there is some controversy on whether or not moderate alcohol consumption can actually be beneficial, especially in terms of lowering hypertension and cardio health risks, many experts are reluctant to recommend any level of alcohol consumption. With the problems associated with chronic abuse and excessive alcohol consumption, the risk of a moderate drinker progressing to an unacceptable or dangerous level of consumption might be too high. However, there are many people who are able to drink socially and at a moderate level who do not experience the damaging effects associated with alcoholism and chronic abuse.

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