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The Psychological Effects of Alcohol

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Alcohol can react in varying ways on different people. While some may display outwardly aggressive and hostile behavior, others will become more extroverted, engage in conversation and feel a sense of well being. These contradictory feelings among subjects are heightened due to alcohols ability to lower inhibitions. When alcohol lowers inhibitions, it is likely to result in saying or doing something unintended. This puts the subject at social risk and contributes to feelings of alienation, feelings of anxiety, and loneliness. Though alcohol may give a temporary elevation to ones mood, it is a depressant and can eventually result in a state of depression for the abuser.

Further abstaining from alcohol will, in most cases, result in the depression subsiding as the subject returns to a state of sobriety. Since the abuser is not yet physically addicted to alcohol, they may be influenced to cease drinking with mild persuasion or trusted advice. However, the various moods and actions taken by an abuser may form the basis of continuing to drink more heavily. An abuser may find pleasure in the elevated high derived from alcohol and desire to repeat the experience.

The abuser who has made regrettable remarks, or sustained a loss due to impaired judgment, may want to drink to mask their depression. As each subject, for their own contrary reasons, continues to drink more and on a more regular basis, they each run the risk of developing alcoholism. Alcoholism is the long-term, regular consumption of alcohol. It is usually marked by an emotional attachment as well as a physical addiction to alcohol. Long-term alcoholism can cause severe health problems. It can damage the body, resulting in mental disorders, and lead to permanent brain damage.

Though some damage may subside with the cessation of drinking, most effects of chronic alcoholism are irreversible. The results of the long-term damage will usually result in long-term care, therapy, and hospitalization

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