Effects of drinking Alcohol

6 June 2016

The Effects of Drinking Alcohol
Alcohol also known as ethanol contains high amounts of intoxicating supplements that are very dangerous to the body. If consumed in high amounts or at a young age, it can severely damage parts of the body such as the liver, brain, and it can eventually lead to death. If people are not careful they can become addicted to alcohol, due to it being classified as a drug. Most young adults, aging from fifteen to twenty, do not take their first drink out of their own free-will but from peer pressure.

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Blood in the body has to go through the liver before circulating throughout the rest of the body. Therefore, consuming a large amount of alcohol over a period of time can lead to three different types of liver conditions: fatty liver, hepatitis, and cirrhosis. Fatty liver is a build-up of fat within the liver cells that occurs from drinking alcohol heavily, but can simply be reversed by lowering the amount of intake. Fatty liver is not serious but if the right precautions are not taken, hepatitis can develop. Hepatitis is the inflammation of the liver, which can leave a person feeling sick, have confusion, go into a coma, bleeding into other organs, and cause jaundice (yellowing of the skin). Cirrhosis, the worst of the conditions, is where normal liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue. The scar tissue affects the normal structure and regrowth of liver cells, is irreversible, and can be fatal.

Alcohol has many short-term affects and a few long-term effects on a person’s brain. A few short term affects include: difficulty walking, slowed reaction time, slurred speech, blurred vision, and impaired memory. These are usually noticeable after a few drinks and can easily be resolved when the drinking stops. On the other hand, the long term effects on the brain handicap an individual even after they have sobered up. A few factors that can determine the extent of what alcohol can do to the brain are: a person’s age, gender, general health, level of education, and how much and how often a person drinks. The main long term affects are blackouts and memory lapses. A blackout can occur when someone drinks too much too fast and causes his/her blood alcohol level to rapidly rise. Memory lapses are just moments when you forget something that happened or forget something someone told you to remember. Both of these effects can cause severe permanent damage to the brain.

Drinking causes people to die. This has been a known fact for many years. Rather it be from just a night of drinking where someone decided to get in a vehicle and drive, drank too much and died from alcohol poisoning, or died after years of drinking from health problems. Fifty-five percent of all automobile crashes involves a drunk or impaired driver. Around 5,000 people die from alcohol poisoning each year. The worst part is that these numbers are increasing every year mainly because alcohol is so easily accessible to underage people.

Although alcohol is legal to purchase, that doesn’t mean people should abuse it. Bars and clubs are the main factor for underage drinking. This is because bars are the easiest place for teens to obtain alcohol and get away with drinking. If every state would make the age limit to twenty-one and older for entrance into a club or bar, we would see a dramatic drop in deaths from alcohol.

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