Many people tend to reach for alcohol whenever they’re feeling down. To many, a glass of wine and beer seems like a very available mood-lifter, helping a person relax and feel more at ease. Unfortunately, that’s not true – although people may experience alcohol’s positive effects at times, in fact, there are more links of alcohol to depression than to happiness.
In fact, studies show that suicide and self-harm linked to depression are much more common for people with alcohol problems. On the one hand, it might be due to the fact that people tend to drink to relieve existing depression. On the other hand, though, scientists suggest that regular or binge drinking might make a person depressed in the long run.
However, depression is just one of the negative effects of misusing alcohol – there are plenty more. What are they? Keep on reading to find out.
In the long run, alcohol can ruin a person’s life. It can make you argue with your family, go into debt, lose your job and money. All the problems coming from the misuse of alcohol may lead to depression, which consequently might cause a person to drink even more. At times, addiction takes a toll on a person’s life so much that the only help can be an Addiction Recovery Centre, a rehab, or AA meetings.
According to Health Canada, alcohol abuse or alcoholism is a situation in which “an individual is physically and psychologically dependent on alcohol and their health, family, work, finances, and social life are negatively impacted.”
A person who is dependent on alcohol and doesn’t receive it will go into withdrawal, which can cause a person to feel “the shakes” or “the sweats,” have nausea or vomiting, insomnia, and have a severely elevated heart rate.
Alcohol makes very severe changes to the chemistry of the brain. As a depressant, it is bound to influence the brain intensely and negatively. Moreover, when a person drinks too much, they’re more likely to act on impulse or make bad decisions, which can lead to unfavorable consequences such as losing a job or ruining relationships with others.
Alcoholism is a disease and requires treatment. It can be compared to any other addiction, and like any other illness, alcoholism may affect the brain in many ways. The effects of alcohol abuse on the brain are in no way worse than the effects of addiction to any other drug. Alcohol is so powerful that its impact on the human body can be compared to a gunshot, making it possible for the user to die as a result of its extensive use.
Entering the cycle of getting drunk and waking up with a hangover causes the person to constantly feel weak and powerless. Moreover, there is a proven connection between a hangover and anxiety. Therefore, in the long run, continuous hangovers may lead to constantly feeling blue and unmotivated, which may turn into depression.
When you are not in the ‘mood’ to face the world, alcoholism makes it very easy for you to give up and give in. This hinders your recovery because it doesn’t allow you to truly acknowledge your problems, never mind try to rise above them.
Alcoholism makes it difficult for you to even want to get better because your desire for the substance is stronger than your willpower. Remember, it isn’t only about physical dependence anymore. By this time, alcohol is a part of your being, and everything in your life revolves around the tool you use to cope with life’s challenges. You think about reaching for a drink or getting high every time some kind of uncomfortable emotion invades your mind.
Once alcohol becomes your go-to solution whenever you encounter some hardship in life, the people who care about you start becoming redundant and unnecessary. That is, of course, until you finally choose to get sober. However, it is not guaranteed that they will still be there for you after all the time you’ve spent pushing them away.
It is also important to notice that getting drunk often puts a person in danger. It is well known that alcohol is a drug, and continuous exposure to it usually leads to physical and mental dependence. In this regard, it is crucial to consider the following risks:
The worst thing about being completely dependent on alcohol is the realization that there is no reason to stay sober. You stop caring about what’s going to happen because your life sucks anyway.
At one point, you might do something you can never undo. For example, you may get in a car accident with a sober driver and hurt them, or you may do something illegal like start a fire and burn your own house down.
Although it might seem impossible to quit drinking once you have gone this far into addiction, you can get better. You just need to ask for help and allow others to help you and take care of you.