There is much more to the dangers of alcohol consumption and dependence than most people realize. It is one topic where a lack of knowledge can be very dangerous, because it has the ability to permanently affect and destroy people’s lives.
First, there are physical problems associated with alcohol abuse. The heart, the brain, the nervous system, the immune system and the digestive system are all negatively affected by alcohol abuse. The dangers of alcohol consumption and dependence also increase the risk of numerous forms of cancer, and can increase the problems associated with preexisting conditions, such as diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. If the person who is drinking is pregnant, it can increase risks during pregnancy and childbirth, as well as risk permanent harm to the unborn child.
Second, abusing alcohol also affects mental health. There are actually two different issues concerning alcohol’s effects on mental health. Excessive drinking can lead to, worsen, or mimic mental conditions. However, alcohol dependence creates and additional problem. The person who has become dependent will find it impossible to manage his daily life without drinking, while drinking makes everyday life equally impossible. It will take a toll on everything from his personal relationships to his job. An alcoholic cannot function as well as a healthy, sober person.
Unfortunately, many people do not take risks seriously because they do not believe any of these consequences can happen to them. On one hand, they may not understand what constitutes dependence. Many alcoholics fully believe they are only having a good time, no matter how much evidence there is to show they have a real problem. On the other hand, some do not know where the line is between safe drinking and dangerous drinking. They feel binging on an occasional basis is not harmful, or a couple of drinks every day cannot possibly present any problems.
The best rule of thumb is the less one drinks, the better. If you avoid drinking alcohol altogether, you are taking sensible precautions for your health and safety. The individual who does not drink will never cause a drunk driving accident, behave foolishly due to drunkenness, or place an unnecessary strain on his health. Amongst the dangers of alcohol consumption and dependence is the idea that everyone uses alcohol. The fact is many adults and young people do not drink at all. Whether you are alone or in a social setting, you have the option of choosing non-alcoholic beverages. This way, you will never have to worry about alcohol becoming a problem for you.