Alcohol Abuse Rehabilitation and Treatment Center

Effects of Alcohol

Alcoholism is an addictive disorder that is characterized by obsessive and compulsive consumption of alcohol despite the negative effects on the person’s health, job and family.   There are four main components effects of alcohol:

•    Craving of alcohol – a strong compulsive need to drink alcohol
•    Loss of control – not being able to stop drinking once you start
•    Physical dependence – body needs alcohol or will experience withdrawals
•    Tolerance-needing more and more alcohol to get same effect

There are 17.6 million adults in the U.S. that are either alcoholics or abuse alcohol. 

There are more men than women who are dependent on alcohol.  Alcohol dependence is highest among young adults ages 18-29 and lowest among adults ages 65 and older.  In fact, the younger a person is when they first begin drinking the more likely they are to develop and alcohol dependence as an adult.

There are many interrelated factors that can cause alcohol dependence including genetics, social background, the environment one is raised in and a person’s emotional health.  People who have a history of alcohol abuse or who associate with heavy drinkers are more likely to develop a drinking problem.  Also, those who suffer from mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder are more susceptible to drinking problems because they are more likely to self-medicate with alcohol.

Short Term Effects of Alcohol

•    Slurred speech  
•    Blurred vision
•    Impaired judgment
•    Loss of coordination
•    Inhibition lowered

Long Term Effects of Alcohol

Narconon drug rehab reports that some of the signs and symptoms of someone abusing alcohol are as follows:

•    Neglecting responsibilities at home, work or school
•    Using alcohol while driving or operating heavy or dangerous machinery
•    Mixing alcohol with prescription medications
•    Repeated legal problems due to drinking such as DUI’s
•    Drinking as a way to relax
•    Continued drinking even though your drinking has caused problems with your personal relationships
•    Tolerance – having to drink more and more in order to get the same effect
•    Withdrawal – flu-like symptoms that occur a person stops drinking that include nausea, vomiting, shaking or tremors, sweats, anxiety and/or depression, loss of appetite and fatigue.
•    Loss of control – drinking more than you intended or not being able to stop once you start drinking
•    Wanting to quit drinking but not being able to   
•    Giving up activities you enjoy because of drinking
•    Continuing to drink even though it is causing you problems at work
•    Liver failure
•    Malnutrition
•    Heart diseases
•    Kidney failure    
•    Blood disorders

Effects on the Brain & Body

Alcohol can reach your brain within one minute.  Compared to food that will hours to digest, 20% of consumed alcohol will be instantly absorbed by the stomach, the rest then traveling to the rest of the body via the small intestines.  There are different effects on the human body depending on how much alcohol is in the blood (blood alcohol content).  If it is less that 0.23 percent one will become lethargic.  They become tired, lose coordination and balance.  Their vision becomes blurry and speech slurred.  If it is around 0.17 to 0.28 percent the person will become confused.  The person may also become aggressive and antagonistic.  Alcohol will also cause the person to become nauseous and dizzy at these numbers.   When it reaches between 0.25 and 0.39 percent coordination becomes severely impaired and the person may go in and out of consciousnesses.   

By the time the Blood Alcohol Level reaches 0.35 to .50 percent a person can go into a coma. Anything above .50 percent can result in death.

Alcohol has much more dangerous effects on the body.   In fact, alcohol affects the amount of fat your body can burn.  In a study done by the American Journal of Clinical Research, only 24g of alcohol consumption showed that the rate the body burns fat decreased by 73%.  This is because when the liver filters alcohol; a chemical is made that appears to severely decrease the body’s fat burning process.  

Alcohol also causes an increase in an individual’s appetite. In another study done by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, consuming alcohol led to increased appetite compared to any other drink with carbohydrates in it.

For more information on the effects of alcohol call 1-800-468-6933.


Click here for more information on how Narconon treats alcohol addiction.