Ten Ways that Alcohol Addiction Can Destroy Your Body
Most people know that alcohol addiction puts the liver under a great amount of strain. However, the liver isn’t the only part of the body that suffers, and you may be surprised to learn the true extent of the damage caused by alcohol. Here are ten of the most significant things that you need to know about alcohol and your health.
- Excessive alcohol consumption can result in chronically high blood pressure levels. If you have uncontrolled high blood pressure, you are dramatically more likely to develop heart disease, experience heart attacks or suffer strokes.
- The immune system is adversely influenced by alcohol consumption, so alcohol addicts may be more likely to develop both bacterial and viral infections. Inhibited immune system function could also lead to more uncomfortable, lengthy and potentially dangerous symptoms during the course of infections.
- Alcohol addicts are extremely susceptible to developing liver disease, which stops the liver from processing toxins effectively and can sometimes lead to death. A 2010 report from The Centers for Disease Control revealed that 15,990 United States residents died from alcohol liver disease in that year alone.
- There is compelling evidence that high levels of alcohol consumption are linked to an increased risk of developing cancer. In particular, cancers of the mouth, throat, breast and liver appear to be more likely in alcohol addicts.
- If you are a woman of childbearing age, alcohol addiction may carry over into pregnancy, and drinking during pregnancy can damage a developing baby by causing birth defects, brain damage, learning difficulties and growth problems.
- Alcohol addicts commonly develop pancreatitis, an inflammation of the pancreas that can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, a high fever and abdominal pain. Further, sufferers of pancreatitis are in turn more likely to develop diabetes or pancreatic cancer in later life.
- Alcohol abuse causes a type of brain damage that can eventually lead to poor motor control, serious memory problems, difficulties with problem solving and an increased likelihood of developing dementia at a younger age.
- Since alcohol intoxication leads to poor coordination, impaired judgments and lowered awareness of one’s surroundings, alcohol addiction is also correlated with a higher likelihood of sustaining potentially fatal bodily injuries and becoming involved in accidents.
- Being addicted to alcohol is connected to developing clinical depression, which carries with it the risk of suicide. It is estimated that someone with an alcohol problem is approximately six times more likely to take their own life.
- Drinking too much increases your susceptibility to dangerous heart rhythm disorders, some of which can cause strokes, embolisms or sudden death. This risk is associated with single binges and with long term alcohol abuse.
While some of this damage to your body is permanent, other elements can be partially controlled or even reversed by working to treat the psychological and physical elements of alcohol addiction. If you are worried that you might have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, seek help today.