Effects of Alcohol

Alcohol is a depressant that slows the body down, and causes delayed reactions. Since the brain is largely affected by alcohol, effective reasoning becomes weakened. A person consuming alcohol does not act in a normal fashion. The central nervous system of the human body becomes depressed; one of the many affects alcohols has on the body. Both peripheral nervous system and the central nervous system can become permanently damages with chronic addiction to alcohol. Alcohol can be absorbed into nearly every single biological tissue in the body. Alcoholics or even occasional drinkers can become dehydrated very easily. Alcohol is a diuretic and causes urination. Alcohol removes fluids from tissues it contacts, leading to dehydration. Dehydration can cause a person to feel fatigued, have dizziness, headaches, and muscle cramps.

Alcohol eats up the bodies nutritional reserves. Because of this individual’s drinking alcohol over a long period of time will begin to look aged and rough. Exercise and hydrating the body helps a person feel normal. Sweat helps release the toxins in the body, and allow alcoholics to get harmful residues out. The body will need vitamins and minerals to replenish what is lost through sweat. Vitamin C, potassium and carbohydrates need to be consumed in order to get the body back to state it was in prior to alcohol consumption.

Other than harming the body, alcohol can harm the way of life. Loved ones around an individual can harmed due to the negative effects alcohol can have.

Blood Alcohol

Alcohol is usually ingested through the mouth, and is then absorbed into the body. Once alcohol reaches the stomach, only 20% is absorbed and goes directly into the blood and the remaining 80% goes through the digestive process and continues onto the small intestine before reaching the bloodstream. Alcohol will reach the liver where it becomes metabolized, and is broken down by enzymes. Only small amounts of alcohol can be processed by the liver, for example a 12 ounce bottle of beer. Anything more than that, the blood become saturated, and is held within tissues until the liver is able to process it. When alcohol is constantly abused anemia and blood clotting abnormalities can occur. A person can become easily bruised, and bleeding will be easier to come by as well. Infection is then able to take place in the body.

The Liver

One way alcohol can affect the liver is through a buildup of scar tissue called cirrhosis. Cirrhosis blocks blood flow and can cause hepatitis. Varicose veins are another result of cirrhosis, which can rupture and cause internal bleeding.  When the liver breaks down alcohol, this process can result in inflammation. The resulting inflammation is called alcoholic hepatitis and can cause symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, fever and fatigue. When the liver is having issues, jaundice, or yellowing of the skin and eyes may occur.

The Reproductive System

Sperm and testosterone in men can be affected, which may lead to impotence and/or infertility. In a woman estrogen metabolism in the liver can be decreased, which boost estrogen levels in the body. Menstrual irregularities can then occur, and worse, like men- infertility.

Alcohol’s Effects on the Stomach

Alcohol can damage the stomach lining through inflammation, inducing gastritis. Ulcers and acid reflux disease occur after overuse of alcohol. With prolonged irritation a vessel can rupture and cause large amounts of bleeding.  This can be very painful and can cause some serious health issue, especially when an individual continues to drink.

The Brain

The cerebellum of the brain, which is responsible for coordinating movements and some forms of learning, is very sensitive to thiamine deficiency which is damaged by continuous alcohol consumption. Alcohol does kill brain cells, but more importantly it prevents the repair, and creation of new ones. Since alcohol damages such a wide variety of the body, especially the brain and CNS, things such as the hippocampus structure become damaged as well and once that occurs long-term lack of growth occurs. The hippocampus is a ridge on the floor of each lateral ventricle in the brain and consists of mostly gray matter and has a primary role in memory coordination.

What happens to one person does not necessarily happen to another. There are many different ways to help recovering alcohol addicts. New technology is constantly thought of and scientifically experimented to help improve this area of expertise, different cases call for different actions.

Alcohol and Other Drugs

Alcohol can affect the metabolism of drugs and it can increase or reduce the metabolism of certain drugs. Alcohol can turn drugs into even more toxic substances. Kidneys filter the blood, and do not metabolize drugs like the liver does. Drugs can build up in the body should your kidneys be damaged.  When the drugs and the alcohol are mixed, the kidneys and liver have a very high potential to undergo permanent damage.  Sometimes these organs can even fail, and death can occur.

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