Effects of Drinking Alcohol

Before explaining the effects of alcohol, it is very important to explain that each person’s body is different and one person’s reaction to alcohol may be completely different from another person.

Some people cannot drink even a very small amount of alcohol without experiencing severe negative side effects such as a hangover, headaches, etc.
Such people would do well to stay away from alcohol completely. However, many negative side effects of drinking alcohol are universal and affect everyone to some degree or the other.

The most dangerous effects of drinking alcohol are not necessarily the most obvious ones. While getting drunk and ending up with a hangover is never a good idea, a hangover clears after some time and is done. On the other hand, cirrhosis of the liver, ulcers, high blood pressure, nerve damage and heart damage remain largely hidden until too late.

That is not to say that all the effects of alcohol are negative. There are positive effects of alcohol consumption as long as one does so in moderation and does not drink strong alcoholic beverages. Having a small can or bottle of beer or a cup of wine after a long day’s work can help one to relax. There are many positive benefits to relaxation, such as lowering blood pressure and helping a person to digest his or her food more easily. However, alcohol in general has a negative connotation because many people drink too much or drink alcohol at the wrong times.

One should never drive after drinking any sort of alcoholic beverage. While it may seem that a small can of beer or a cup of wine does not have much of an effect, it actually does affect one’s concentration and impairs driving ability. One can cause an accident with tragic consequences while under the influence of alcohol. One should also avoid drinking while depressed. While many people associate alcohol with happy feelings, it is actually a downer.

Pregnant women and those taking regular medications should completely avoid drinking alcohol. Alcohol can have an extremely detrimental effect on an unborn fetus, especially in the first trimester of pregnancy, when the fetus is first forming in the womb. A pregnant mother who drinks throughout her pregnancy risks having a baby, who is born early, is underweight and has other complications at birth.

Alcohol and medicine never mix. Taking the two of these together can have life threatening consequences. A person taking medications should consult with his or her doctor regarding alcohol consumption but in most cases, the doctor will advise a person to abstain completely from alcohol while on medication. Alcohol also causes weight gain, so a person who is trying to lose weight should either drink in moderation or stop drinking altogether.

While alcohol is typically consumed in a social setting, the effects of alcohol are mostly negative. However, one does not have to worry about these negative effects as much as long as he or she drinks in moderation and at the right times.