How Alcohol Affects Brain Chemistry
You probably already know that alcohol addiction can impact your relationships, your employment, and your day-to-day life, but you may not know that this dangerous drug can also damage your brain. In fact, the effects of alcohol on the brain include rewiring your brain from the inside, creating alterations in brain chemistry that can trigger anxiety, depression, and a host of other issues.
Effects of Alcohol on the Brain
Alcohol does more than harm your coordination and damage your liver – alcohol can also create changes in the brain, alterations in brain chemistry that could have long-lasting and devastating effects. Here are some of the effects of alcohol on the brain:
- Blocking of signals between neurons in the brain
- Damage to the speech centers in the brain, resulting in slurred speech
- Alterations in the balance center, creating a loss of coordination and increasing the risk of falls
- Slowing of reflexes, creating safety hazards on the job and while driving
- Reductions in impulse control, increasing the risk of violence
Alcoholism and Anxiety
Anxiety and alcoholism often occur in tandem, and the link between the two can run in both directions. You may have been suffering from anxiety all along, using alcohol in a failed attempt to treat your symptoms and make yourself feel better. Or maybe your excessive use of alcohol helped trigger the anxiety, as symptoms set in and the scope of the issue came into focus.
No matter which happened first and what caused what issue, there is a clear link between alcoholism and anxiety, and it is essential to address both sets of problems. When combatting alcoholism and addiction, you need to implement a plan of action that will allow you to tackle not only your excessive use of alcohol but your anxiety problems as well.
Alcoholism and Depression
In many cases, alcoholism and depression can go hand-in-hand, and the relationship can go both ways. Those with undiagnosed depression may try to self-medicate with alcohol, soothing their feelings but creating an entirely new set of problems. At the same time, alcoholics often feel depressed, isolated, and alone, worrying that they will never be able to stop drinking and wondering where they can turn for help.
No matter what the situation, the link between alcoholism and depression is clear enough, but you do not have to suffer in silence. Every day you continue to drink is one more day you are damaging your brain, and those changes in brain chemistry could make a preexisting problem with depression that much worse or even trigger a new bout of despair. If you are ready to get help, we encourage you to reach out today, and the assistance you need is just a phone call away.
When to Seek Help for Alcohol Abuse
It can be challenging to think clearly when you are struggling with a drinking problem. Alcohol can have a significant impact on brain chemistry, making it difficult to see the world clearly, let alone know when it is time to seek help.
These difficulties are understandable, but if you are wondering if you have a drinking problem, you should always trust your gut. The excessive use of alcohol may have impacted your brain, but you can trust your intuition, especially if that little voice in your head tells you that something is wrong.
When you are ready to get help with your alcoholism or other types of drinking problems, you can rely on the WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab staff to provide the assistance and guidance you need. We understand alcoholism and the impact alcohol has on the brain. Still, we also know that many of those adverse effects can be reversed, especially if you seek help promptly and get into detox right away.
WhiteSands Alcohol Detox and Rehab
It is not easy to admit you have a drinking problem, and making that admission is a courageous thing to do. Now that you have taken that difficult first step away from addiction, we encourage you to continue your walk toward sobriety by picking up the phone and give our staff a call.
When you make that call, we will go to work right away, developing a program that will help your body heal quickly and comfortably, all while setting you up for success through our state-of-the-art rehab program. By the time you are ready to return home, you will have a plan in place for a lifetime of sobriety, so you can reclaim your life and start rebuilding your relationships.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.