People consume alcohol every day. But harmful problems with alcohol use are, according to the World Health Organization, a causal factor in over 200 injuries and diseases. Worldwide, approximately 3 million deaths occur each year from the harmful use of alcohol.1
Alcohol use can lead to severe short and long-term problems for one’s body, mind, and life. Read on to determine how alcohol use can lead to adverse health effects and how outpatient alcohol rehab in Scottsdale may be a wise choice for you or a loved one.
Physical Problems with Alcohol Use
Regular alcohol use may lead to significant physical problems, such as injuries, illnesses, and chronic conditions.
Short-Term Health Effects
Some of the most common short-term health effects from alcohol use include:
- Dry skin
- Sleep disorders
- An increased risk of stroke
- Liver damage
- High blood pressure
Furthermore, drinking alcohol in excess – defined as consuming four or five drinks during a single occasion for women or men, respectively 2 – may lead to other short-term physical health risks, including:
- Injuries from accidents, like motor vehicle crashes, falling or drowning
- Violence, including suicide, homicide, and sexual assault
- Alcohol poisoning
Alcohol consumption in any capacity frequently leads to minor and unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, such as headaches/hangovers.3
Long-Term Health Effects
In the long-term, alcohol use and abuse may lead to a higher risk of chronic disease development or other serious health problems 4 such as:
- A higher likelihood of developing certain cancers, such as breast cancer, mouth cancer, throat cancer, and liver cancer
- Heart disease
- Digestive problems
- Liver disease
- Weakening of the immune system, which can increase one’s chances of getting sick
Alcohol addiction may lead to worse withdrawal symptoms, such as sweating, shaking, or nausea when you do not drink.
Mental Problems with Alcohol Use
Alcohol use doesn’t just negatively affect the body. It also has significant and severe adverse effects on the mind, particularly when consumed excessively. Common mental problems with alcohol use 5 include but are not limited to:
- An increased chance of developing anxiety, depression, or related symptoms
- A high chance of developing long-term insomnia
- Problems with memory and learning, such as dementia
These problems may manifest ancillary or related symptoms before a mental health professional or therapist diagnoses them. For instance, learning or memory recall difficulties may manifest in school, leading to poor grades and the inability to graduate from educational programs.
Anxiety or depression may lead to relational or social problems, as well as cause other physical health issues. For instance, a deeply depressed person may not eat or drink enough, leading to fatigue or related health problems.
Relational Problems with Alcohol Use
Relational or social problems with alcohol use are very common, especially among those who drink excessively or binge drink. When alcohol affects you, you may not respond properly to social cues or situations, leading to relational damage.
For instance, drinking a lot of alcohol could make you more temperamental or lose self-control. You may act differently than you usually do, particularly if you drink so much that you experience so-called “blackout” periods where you do not remember what you did or where you were.
In the long-term, alcohol use could lead to serious relational problems such as:
- The inability to fulfill significant relationship obligations, like picking up your child from school
- Prioritizing alcohol consumption over other social situations or desires
- Ruining relationships when others try to stop you from drinking as much or at all
Occupational Problems with Alcohol Use
Regular alcohol use may lead to serious problems with your occupation or profession. For example, drinking too heavily the night before work could cause you to sleep in, missing a critical deadline for an important work project.
Alternatively, alcohol use could cause changes to your behavior that make you less pleasant to be around or that negatively impact your work performance. This can occur due to social changes or changes in your mental state/abilities, such as memory loss, irritability, or difficulty concentrating.
If left unchecked, regular alcohol use could cause you to lose your job or miss out on important professional opportunities.
Because of the relational and occupational problems associated with alcohol use, alcohol abuse may lead to major and negative lifestyle shifts. A few months of binge drinking could have effects that last for years to come.
Outpatient Rehab – A Better Path Forward
Alcohol use may lead to a wide range of problems. But it doesn’t have to continue. With Desert Cove Recovery’s outpatient alcohol rehab services, you can get the assistance you need to recover from alcohol use or addiction and retake control of your life.
Desert Cove’s alcohol rehab in Scottsdale offers holistic treatment with a four-dimensional philosophy to ensure comprehensive recovery. With our twelve-step programs and holistic therapies, you’ll get the help you need. Contact us today.
Sources: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/alcohol  https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/alcohol-use.htm  https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohols-effects-health/alcohols-effects-body  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3307043/