Understanding Why People Drink Alcohol
When a person has an alcohol dependence, they will often find themselves unable to stop drinking and continue to repeat a self-destructive cycle for extended periods of time.
Over time they begin to believe that living alcohol free is something that's just not possible and as the cycle continues, they can experience long-term changes in their brain chemistry, making it difficult for them to think clearly or make rational decisions for simple daily tasks.
As with any type of addiction, signs, and symptoms can vary depending on the individual as well as the severity of their condition.
What Happens To Your Body When You Drink Alcohol?
This process causes an increase in dopamine, a neurotransmitter responsible for pleasure and reward.
As a result of this increased dopamine release, people can experience feelings of relaxation and a sense of euphoria from drinking alcohol.
These pleasant effects are often followed by harsher realities as drinking persists over time.
Regularly drinking large amounts of alcohol can have a lot of negative effects on the body's chemistry, leading to long-term health issues.
Alcohol consumption disrupts several important chemical processes within the body, such as electrolyte balance (potassium, sodium, and chloride levels), nerve transmission processes, and disrupts enzyme activity which helps digest foods and moves nutrients around.
Additionally, regular drinking can cause an accumulation of fat in the liver due to its effect on metabolism, which can lead to permanent damage or scarring of the organ, known as cirrhosis.
Excessive alcohol consumption has been linked to deficiencies in essential vitamins such as thiamine (B1) and folate (B9).
These vitamins are necessary for healthy cognitive functioning, and without them, people may be more prone to mental health issues such as anxiety, or depression.
In addition to these effects on your brain chemistry, heavy drinkers tend to suffer from physical symptoms like fatigue and muscle weakness due to their bodies having difficulty synthesizing proteins properly that are needed for energy production.
Long-term consequences such as vitamin deficiencies or organ damage can occur if someone is not careful with their alcohol intake and understanding signs of addiction is important so that changes can be made before it's too late.
Signs of Alcohol Addiction
Needing to drink increasingly larger amounts in order to reach that same level of intoxication and feeling of euphoria.
Stronger desires or urges to drink earlier in the day or to feel as though they must have a drink as soon as they wake up.
Not being able to stop drinking after having one glass of red wine or a schooner of beer.
Experiencing withdrawal symptoms and drinking more to avoid the 'hangover' feelings.
Missing school or work commitments to have more time for drinking.
Withdrawing socially in order to continue with the cycle of addiction without judgment from family or friends seeing how much alcohol you consume.
Spending too much money on alcohol or struggling with financial issues due to excessive drinking.
Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
In addition to signs that may be visible on the outside, individuals suffering from addiction may experience psychological symptoms such as:
Difficulty concentrating, making decisions, and remembering things.
Intense emotional highs followed by extreme lows caused by intoxication or withdrawal.
Feelings of sadness or hopelessness combined with irrational fears that may worsen when not drinking.
Downplaying or ignoring warnings about their excessive drinking habits and the impacts on their life.
Long-Term Effects Of Alcohol On The Body
Heavy drinkers face numerous health risks over time as a result of their excessive consumption.
The long-term effects of alcohol can include damage done to major organs such as the liver, heart, pancreas, and stomach, as well as neurological impairments such as memory loss and cognitive decline.
Also, people suffering from AUD may experience changes in their physical appearance, like rapid weight loss due to malnutrition or even seizures resulting from severe alcohol poisoning.
High Blood Pressure & Other Complications
This effect then places more pressure on the person's heart and a continued increase in their blood pressure, which can become chronic and potentially life-threatening if left untreated.
Over time, people who drink heavily also lead to atherosclerosis, a condition in which fatty plaques build up within the arteries, restricting blood flow and leading to further increases in blood pressure.
When combined with other cardiovascular risk factors such as obesity or smoking, this could result in life-threatening cardiovascular events such as stroke or a heart attack.
Drinking Too Much Alcohol Can Effect Relationships
Heavy drinkers tend to become more reclusive, causing them to push away friends and family who attempt to reach out for help, and even if the person maintains contact with loved ones while binge drinking, they may become easily irritated or aggressive towards loved ones during conversations resulting in damaged relationships over time.
This can lead to feelings of guilt or shame associated with their behavior leading them further into isolation away from potential sources of support during recovery.
Effects on your Career
This can lead many people suffering from AUD into unemployment as employers could be unwilling to hire them for long terms positions due risk associated with potential addiction relapse.
These effects compounded together can eventually cause individuals who suffer from AUD financial ruin if left untreated.
Countries With The Highest Alcohol Abuse Statistics
This means that one in every four adults has a drinking problem, with the prevalence being highest in Eastern Europe, North Africa, and Central Asia.
There are more than 18 million people suffering from excessive alcohol use in Russia, which is about 12% of the population, and it has been found that alcohol is a factor in more than half of all murders and suicides.
Has an estimated 7 million people have a problem with alcohol, which is approximately 15% of their population needing addiction treatment. Alcohol is a factor in more than 60% of crimes and 70% of deaths from accidents.
Has an estimated 5 million Poles with alcohol addiction or 11% of their population. Alcohol is also a factor in more than 50% of traffic fatalities and nearly half of all homicides committed each year there.
Similar to Poland with 27% of its population suffering from alcoholism, making it one of the most affected countries in Europe.
Approximately 17 million adults, or 7% of the USA population is reported to have an alcohol use disorder.
It's Time to Take Care of yourself
By choosing to begin your recovery at the leading rehab in Thailand, you will not only have access to some of the best treatment available anywhere in the world, but you'll be able to notice the health benefits within the first few days of your stay with us.
As the program is structured to be personalized to your own situation, the positive impact and changes you will see in your own well-being won't be hard to spot.
Since opening in 2017, our primary focus has been on helping people just like you or your loved one to quit drinking safely and be able to remain sober for years after they have finished the inpatient aspect of their recovery.
We want your stay with us to be the last time you ever need clinical-level care, and we will continue to support you long after you've returned home.
You can use the contact information on this page or reach out to our Admissions Team anytime day or night. We are always ready to assist anyone looking for help.