Did you know:
An estimated 88,000 people die from alcohol-related causes every year. This makes alcohol the third leading preventable cause of death in the United States.1
Alcohol addiction can cause serious bodily harm, especially when it is abused over a long period of time. Here are just a few of the many ways alcohol can negatively affect your body:
- The brain: 80% of alcoholics are deficient in vitamin B1, which the brain needs to function.2 This can lead to serious brain disorders such as Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome. Dementia and seizures can also be a result of consistent heavy drinking.
- The lungs: Large amounts of alcohol can cause a person’s breathing to stop. People who drink heavily are also more susceptible to infections and are more likely to have pneumonia, tuberculosis, and acute respiratory distress syndrome.3
- The heart: Chronic drinking is a leading cause of cardiovascular disease.4 It can also cause high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, stroke, heart attack, heart failure, and anemia.
- The pancreas: 67% (or two-thirds) of cases of chronic pancreatitis occur in people who have a history of heavy drinking.5 Chronic drinking damages the pancreas, often leading to chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer, which has a very high mortality rate.
- The intestines: Alcohol abuse irritates and damages the tissues in the digestive tract, which hinders the body’s ability to absorb nutrients and digest food. This damage can lead to bouts of diarrhea, stomach pain, malnutrition, ulcers, and colon cancer.6
- The liver: 47.9% of all cirrhosis deaths in 2013 were alcohol-related. Of those deaths, 76.5% were among people ages 25-34.1 Heavy drinking severely damages the liver and can cause liver disease and cirrhosis.
- The reproductive system: Men who drink heavily are more likely to experience erectile dysfunction and women who drink too much may stop menstruating, which increases their risk for infertility. Excessive alcohol consumption also increases the risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases.8
Other consequences of alcohol addiction include:
- Nerve damage
Alcohol Detox at Briarwood Detox Center
Medically assisted alcohol detox programs can help people achieve a stable and sober state by managing uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. Briarwood Detox Center offers round-the-clock care, individualized programs, and luxury amenities for the most comfortable detox experience possible. Call to enroll. Beds are available now.