Alcohol is a psychoactive and toxic substance with dependence-producing properties. Today, alcoholic drinks are a routine part of many people’s social lives. In this context, it is easy to ignore or overlook the health and social damage caused or contributed by drinking alcohol leading to the prevalence of alcohol use disorder.
What Happens To Your Body If You Drink Alcohol Every Day?
Drinking alcohol every day can lead to severe consequences for a person’s mental and physical health. This is both in the short- and long term. Many of the effects of drinking daily can be reversed with early intervention. The longer you drink, the harder it becomes to stop. It is essential to recognize an alcohol use disorder and treat it as early as possible to avoid damage to the brain and body.
Signs You Should Quit Drinking Alcohol
The thought of quitting drinking can be hard to reason with but here are some questions that will help and very clear signs s you should quit drinking alcohol.
In the last year, do any of the following apply to you?
- Experienced times when you ended up drinking more or longer than you intended
- You have tried to cut down or quit drinking more than once and failed
- Spent a significant amount of time drinking alcohol, being sick from not drinking, or fighting a hangover
- Experienced cravings
- Discovered that drinking interfered with your daily life
- Continued to drink even though it was causing issues with your family or friends
- Avoided things that were important to you to drink
- Increased reckless/risky behavior
- Continued to drink even though it made you feel depressed or anxious
- Amount you drink increases to reach the effect you want
What Happens To Your Body When You Stop Drinking?
Frequent drinking and binge drinking can be dangerous to your health. It has a profound effect on every organ in the body and can lead to serious damage that is fatal.
Quitting drinking can help your body:
- Provide relief to your liver
- Decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease
- Reduce your risk of developing cancer
- Promote weight loss
- Boost your brainpower
The First 72 Hours
As soon as 6 hours after your last drink, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can start to set in. Some may need help to go through the withdrawal symptoms safely. Detoxing with medical staff is often the best way to get through it safely. Detoxing on your own is not always safe.
Some withdrawal symptoms felt during this time are:
- change in mood
- loss of appetite
Severe withdrawal will also include delirium tremens, also known as DTs.
1 Week After Quitting Alcohol
After about a week of sobriety, the brain and body begin to resume “normal.” The most severe and unpleasant withdrawal symptoms should have subsided. At this time, hormone levels are much more balanced. Sleep patterns and sleep quality are significantly improved.
After 1 Month of Sobriety
By this time changes occur related to digestive health. You won’t suffer from acid reflux or bloating as often. You will also notice weight loss, lowered blood pressure, and your skin will have a healthy glow
Benefits of No Alcohol for 3 Months
The benefits of no alcohol for 3 months are the most significant as they now impact your major organs. The liver sustains significant damage from long-term alcohol use. When given the opportunity, this organ is also magnificent at regeneration. During this time, energy levels rise, and overall better health begins.
What happens when you stop drinking alcohol for three months is more than physical. For three months, alcoholics in recovery often report positive changes in their emotional state, career, finances, and personal relationships. These include but are not limited to:
- Feelings of depression and anxiety may subside
- Critical thinking skills improve
- Better performance and productivity at work or school
- Increased savings due to a decrease in alcohol purchases
- Improved relationships with family and close friends
Benefits of No Alcohol for 6 Months
At this stage, you’ve continued to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. For anyone dealing with mental health challenges before or while they were drinking, going alcohol-free often reduces the intensity of mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
Increased quality of sleep will have some positive effects on many people. It might mean the ability to get up earlier and get more done in the day. For some, they find that meditation, reading, or other activities such as a pottery class, become more possible. Sleep dictates our energy levels to an extent so exercise or any form of movement can become easier and more enjoyable.
Benefits of No Alcohol for 12 Months
Abstaining for 12 months is a massive achievement so celebrate your success whatever it may look like. People report needing fewer sick days from work, and your heart is a whole lot healthier than it was 12 months ago.
Your immune system is also functioning better, and your liver is loving life. Continue using the strategies, tools, and support team that has helped you get this far, and don’t hesitate to reach out for support when you need it to stay on track.
Treatment Options for Alcohol Misuse & Addiction
There are a variety of treatment methods available for alcohol misuse and addiction. But keep in mind that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. It is essential to understand that what may work for one person may not suit someone else.
Some common treatment options for alcohol addiction include:
- Behavioral treatments
- Support groups
- Inpatient rehab
- Outpatient treatment
Start Your Recovery Journey Today
If you or someone you know is ready to stop drinking and controlling their substance abuse disorder, contact us today. Remember, alcoholism is a life-threatening condition. Through our comprehensive alcohol abuse treatment programs, we can help you start your journey toward recovery and leave alcohol dependence behind you.