6 Ways Alcohol Affects Your Health Cleveland Clinic

The liver breaks down alcohol into acetaldehyde, a toxic substance that scars and inflames the liver. This chemical also interferes with the liver’s ability to break down and metabolize fats. This causes that fat to accumulate and may lead to fatty liver — an early stage of alcohol-related liver disease.

  • Fatty liver is usually completely reversible in about four to six weeks if you completely abstain from drinking alcohol.
  • This can increase your risk for heart disease in the long run.
  • Individuals in end-stage alcoholism become more susceptible to severe illnesses like pneumonia, bronchitis, and other life-threatening conditions.
  • Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome can be reversed if caught and treated in its early stages, but damage caused in later stages cannot be reversed.

While the risk rises as people age and alcohol exposure accumulates, more than 5,000 Americans in their 20s, 30s and 40s die from alcoholic liver disease annually. When experts talk about the dire health consequences linked to excessive alcohol use, people often assume that it’s directed at individuals who have an alcohol use disorder. But the health risks from drinking can come from moderate consumption as well. If you drink too often, misuse alcohol like binge drink, or drink to the point of blacking out, it can cause many physical and mental health issues in the long term.

Understanding the Dangers of Alcohol Overdose

Beer ranges from 3% to 8% ABV and wine is typically around 10% ABV—but don’t forget that these percentages are influenced by many factors. Reach out to a treatment provider for free today for immediate assistance. Using powerful new genotyping technologies, Dick and her colleagues can calculate a polygenic risk score that looks across https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/5-ways-alcohol-can-kill-you-end-stage-alcoholism-death/ a person’s genome to create what she calls an index of genetic liability. “We can start to predict who might be at greater risk,” she said. Typically the final step, continuing care groups help attendants maintain sobriety without the help of structured programs. Meetings usually meet for about an hour or two once per week.

For example, alcohol has been connected to various cases of people drowning, falling, or being struck by cars. Additionally, people who drink alcohol heavily are much more likely to attempt suicide. About 30% of suicide victims drink alcohol before taking their lives. Many types of brain damage caused by alcohol use can be reversed, but not all. Decreased brain volume will eventually heal if drinking is stopped.

Alcohol Overdose and the Recovery Position

It can also increase snoring and sleep apnea, making it hard to get a good night’s rest. Heavy drinking can hamper your immune cells from fighting off viruses and bacteria. It also can harm your liver, which plays an important role in your immune system by making antibacterial proteins. The average person would have to consume 25 standard drinks to reach 0.40 percent BAC. Bear in mind that the drink you’re holding might be larger than a standard drink.

ways alcohol can kill you

Alongside the opioid overdose crisis, another hidden epidemic is quietly raging. Every year in the United States, more people die of alcohol-related causes than from opioids and other drugs. Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, rates of excessive alcohol use were high and getting higher.


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