effects of alcohol addiction

Alcohol Addiction Psychological and Physiological Disorders

Alcohol addiction can cause different symptoms arising from craving to drink alcohol uncontrollably. The addiction to alcohol affects the quality of life that a person lives as it produces many adverse psychological, social and physiological consequences. There are different manifestations of alcohol addiction that warrant immediate diagnosis and treatment as a preventive measure to avoid the progressive addiction behavior towards alcohol.

There are different kinds of alcohol addiction symptoms that could easily signal that one’s inclination to drink alcoholic beverages has gone beyond control and limitations. These symptoms often manifest as one that leads to tolerance which increases one’s need for more alcohol consumption to satisfy their craving for alcoholic drinks. Physical changes usually occur in the attempt to stop the addiction with withdrawal symptoms.

An individual who is preoccupied with alcoholic drinks affects his or her behavior and will eventually result in psychological and physiological disorders. The effects of Alcohol Addiction cover the whole aspect of one’s life but the main and damaging part are the physical effects. Without getting alcohol addiction treatment it can lead to more adverse consequences that could alter the quality of life of the alcohol addict.

Physical Effects includes:

  • liver cirrhosis
  • pancreatitis
  • alcoholic dementia
  • epilepsy
  • heart disease
  • weight loss or gain
  • puffy face and red eyes
  • polyneuropathy
  • nutritional deficiencies
  • sexual dysfunction
  • chances of cancer
  • death

Social Effects:

  • loss of employment
  • school problem for failing grades and numerous absences
  • social isolation
  • personal matters such as marital conflicts, domestic violence, etc.
  • financial problems that will lead to stealing from others to finance addiction

Mental Effects:

  • anxiety and depression disorders
  • panic disorder
  • brain damage
  • suicides
  • murders
  • accidental deaths

Aside from these range of effects, persistent consumption of alcohol can also result for poor judgment that may lead to some legal problems such as criminal charges for driving under the influence (DUI) or civil penalties for undesirable behavior, changes in sleep habits and many more that are not pleasant for the individual suffering form alcohol addiction or alcohol dependence.

Alcohol Addiction Related Research

Alcohol Use In Relation to Maltreatment

Shin SH et al. of the Boston University School of Social Work in Boston Massachusetts, USA studied the relationship between alcohol use and multiple forms of maltreatment by guardians or parents. The study showed a high correlation between maltreatment and alcohol abuse. Data were obtained from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. The outcome of the study revealed that one third of those who reported maltreatment had experienced more than one type of maltreatment. The study was also suggestive that all types or combination of the different types of maltreatment except physical abuse only are strongly associated with alcohol use in adolescents, controlling for age, race, gender and parental alcoholism. Furthermore the study supported that child maltreatment has a deleterious effect on adolescent alcohol use.

Parental Alcoholism and Genetic Transmission to Child ADHD Risk

The Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies of the Department of Community Health of Brown University Medical School studied the genetic influences in the risk for the development of the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with parental exposure to alcohol or nicotine that increases the risk of its development. The outcome of the study showed that ADHD is more likely to be diagnosed in girls whose mother or father were dependent with alcohol or whose mother have reported to use alcohol during their pregnancy which is also evident in those with low birth weight. 86% of the residual variance in ADHD risk is attributed to genetic effects while 14% are attributed to non-shared environmental influences.

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