Alcohol

spilled alcohol on table

ALCOHOL ADDICTION

 

Over 13 million people in the U.S. suffer from alcohol abuse. An estimated 88,000 people die from alcohol related causes annually, making alcohol the 3rd leading preventable cause of death in the United States.1

Alcohol is widely consumed in America and all over the world, and is highly abused by many. Alcohol addiction and abuse can come in many forms. There is help for those that are in need of changing their life and their habits. 

WHAT IS ALCOHOL?

  • Alcohol is a legally controlled substance.

  • The ingredient ethyl alcohol, causes alcohol’s intoxicating effects. 

  • Variations include​ beer, wine, and hard liquors like rum, gin, vodka and whiskey.

HOW DOES ALCOHOL AFFECT YOUR BODY AND BRAIN?

Alcohol is a depressant that slows down the central nervous system.​2 This can lead to​ feelings such as relaxation, self confidence, lowered inhibitions, anger and confusion. It can also cause physical changes like loss of memory, lack of coordination, and a lack of good decision making.​3

Liquors
brain diagram

SIGNS SOMEONE COULD BE MISUSING:

  • smell of alcohol

  • hidden bottles

  • declining of personal hygiene

  • mood swings

  • hangovers

  • slurred speech

  • impaired vision

  • making bad decisions

Over time, excessive alcohol use could lead to the development of chronic diseases and other serious problems.

INJURIES

  • Car crashes 

  • Falls

  • Drownings

  • Burns

 

VIOLENCE

  • Homicide

  • Suicide

  • Sexual assault

  • Intimate partner violence

 

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH

  • Risky sexual behaviors

  • Unintended pregnancy

  • Sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV

  • Miscarriage

  • Stillbirth

  • Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs)

  • Long-Term Health Risks

 

CHRONIC DISEASE

  • High blood pressure

  • Heart disease

  • Stroke

  • Liver disease

  • Digestive problems

CANCERS
 

  • Breast

  • Mouth and throat

  • Liver

  • Colon

 

LEARNING & MEMORY PROBLEMS

  • Dementia

  • Poor school performance

 

MENTAL HEALTH

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

 

SOCIAL PROBLEMS

  • Lost productivity

  • Family problems

  • Unemployment

 

ALCOHOL DEPENENCE

 

References

  1. CDC. ​Alcohol, Frequently Asked Questions​. October 2016.

  2. Mukherjee S. “​Alcoholism and its effect on the central nervous system​.” Current Neurovascular Research, August 2013.

  3. NIDA for Teens. ​Alcohol.