Alcohol makes people less alert and impairs concentration and coordination. Some people use alcohol to reduce anxiety and in the short term, it can help with this. In small quantities, alcohol can cause people to relax and lower their inhibitions. However, alcohol use can produce a range of short-term and long-term problems. When a person is intoxicated, they are at risk of a number of problems and that isshort-term.
Physical injuries – people are more likely to engage in risky behaviour which can lead to injury or death.
Aggression and antisocial behaviour – people can become aggressive and are at much higher risk of committing crimes.
Sexual risk taking – the consequences of these behaviours can be unwanted sexual contact, unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.
Suicide and self-injury – when a person is intoxicated, they are more likely to act on suicidal thoughts or injure themselves.
Long-term problems caused by alcohol use
With heavy and prolonged use, alcohol can cause physical, psychological and social problems and that is long-term.
Alcohol use disorders – people who regularly drink alcohol above the recommended levels.
Other substance use disorders – people who use alcohol are more likely to be introduced to other drugs.
Depression and anxiety – heavy alcohol use increases risk of depression and anxiety. If a person is feeling suicidal, they are more likely to attempt suicide when under the influence of alcohol.
Social problems – abuse of alcohol is associated with family conflict, dropping out of school, unemployment, social isolation and legal problems.
Physical health problems – in the long term, heavy use of alcohol can produce problems such as liver disease, brain damage, heart impairment, cancers, diabetes and much more.
If you or someone you know are experiencing any of these symptoms, speak to a mental health professional. Our professionals are available to help you 24/7.