Alcohol often promotes sociability, conversation, pleasure and a sense of wellbeing. Some people also report an increase in creativity. Alcohol also has a slight therapeutic value as a means to reduce stress. While it does relieve stress in the short term, it does not do anything to treat the actual source causing the stress. Rather the opposite is true, that alcohol disables you to take positive actions to solve problems. So, over the longer term, alcohol increases the anxiety levels and when the anxiety persists, the desire to self-medicate with more alcohol leads to alcohol dependency.
There is a myth. People commonly believe that alcohol helps you sleep. Certainly, it sure can help you ‘fall’ asleep but it also interrupts normal sleep cycles and you may find yourself feeling tired and unwell, even if you have slept a long time. What’s worse is that alcohol can also cause insomnia in addition to making existing sleep problems worse.
Alcohol can cause or aggravate sexual problems as well. Abusive drinking, for example, can make it difficult for men to achieve an erection and for women to attain an orgasm.
With a rise in your BAL, the brain’s centers are affected. There is a difficulty with coordination and physical movement and an obvious increase in reaction time and these effects depend on how much you drink. But generally it looks like your body is on “Go Slow” policy. If you have a BAL of 80 mg of alcohol/100 cc of blood, your reaction time will be 40% slower on average then with no alcohol in your blood. No wonder driving and drinking makes it difficult to hit the break when suddenly needed.
With intoxication, your thought processes, speech and senses are also adversely affected. Since verbal skills allow you to resolve problems, there is a greater likelihood of aggression and violence.
The alcohol and the toxic acetaldehyde in your blood cause nausea and there is a tendency to vomit. Alcohol also affects the anti-diuretic hormone that maintains hydration level, so in a way alcohol also works as a diuretic. The kidneys no longer reabsorb sufficient water from your urine and you end up eliminating more water. The dehydration also contributes to the symptoms of hangover to a great deal.
The brain is not really completely developed until after the age of twenty; therefore the brains of adolescents are more vulnerable to alcohol-related damaged than adults. Studies highlight the effects of alcohol on the ability to learn and make decisions. The earlier children begin to drink, the greater the risk that they will develop alcoholism soon.