Do you take a glass of alcohol every so often? Do you know a loved one who does? Have you ever asked yourself what the effects of drinking on the body are?
After taking the bottle for some time, one starts to get dependent on it for day-to-day functioning.
Drinking has adverse effects on a person’s health. It affects almost every part of the body. Every part that comes into contact with the drink suffers in the long term.
Dependency is associated with increased anxiety and nervousness. A person becomes withdrawn. They cannot socialize without a drink. If one has not indulged in a given amount of time, one experiences withdrawal symptoms. At this point, the process of detoxing from alcohol becomes one in which external help and support are likely needed to prevent relapse.
The withdrawal symptoms are characterized by headaches, anxiety, tremors and so on. At this stage, the medical health of a person starts to deteriorate.
When drinking, the first organs to get into contact with the drug are the digestive tract organs. It corrodes the gastrointestinal tract thereby interfering with the digestion process. It interferes with the absorption of the nutrients leading to malnutrition. Heavy drinking also causes bloating, painful, stools and sometimes diarrhea. The substance abuse habit can also lead to ulcers as a result of regular dehydration and constipation. If the sores aren’t diagnosed early, they could be fatal.
After absorption into the blood system, the complications start to interfere with the blood sugar and the blood pressure. People who are chronic drinkers are more likely to develop diabetes and high blood pressure.
The heavy drinkers are more likely to develop heart complications. Other cardiovascular effects include irregular heartbeat, heart disease, heart attack and heart failure.
Alcohol increases the buildup of fats along the walls of the blood vessels. It causes an immediate rise in the blood pressure. The heart is, therefore, required to use more energy to pump the blood. After some time of strain, the heart muscles weaken. If too much cholesterol is deposited in the coronary artery, the supply of fresh blood to the heart muscles is limited. These effects might eventually cause a heart attack.
The liver is a vital organ in the body as it helps in the elimination of the harmful chemicals in the blood. Therefore, after substance abuse, it breakdowns the contents and eliminates what could be potentially hazardous. However, after heavy and chronic drinking, the liver becomes overwhelmed.
It starts to collect fats leading to fatty liver, also referred to as steatosis. The condition is characterized by the accumulation of fats in the liver cells. The disease usually goes away if and when one stops to drink.
With continued drinking one may get hepatitis. It is the inflammation of the liver and can lead to life-threatening effects on a person. Alcohol Cirrhosis is one of the most dangerous health conditions. It leads to the replacement of healthy liver cells with nonliving tissues.
The substance abuse also has a myriad of cognitive effects. On the surface, drinking can lead to forgetfulness, poor learning, and amnesia. It also leads to drastic mood changes which can affect the social life of a person.
In massive quantities, drinking can lead to hallucinations and blackouts. It can be dangerous to the life of a person depending on where the blackout happens. It also leads to shrinking of the entire brain which could be catastrophic to a person in the long
Continued drinking prevents the body from keeping the skeletal structure strong. A chronic drinker has a higher risk of suffering from fractures when they fall.
Drinking also compromises the medical health of a person by weakening the immune system. One is more likely to fall sick.
Heavy drinking can lead to gross effects on women’s medical health. It is associated with increased risk of infertility. Drinking during pregnancy can lead to premature delivery, stillbirths or miscarriage.
Drinking usually starts as an enjoyable habit. However, it is advisable to sift through its effects and make an informed decision to whether to continue with the pattern or not. Important to note, it also affects the other family members socially and psychologically.