Effects of alcohol

Alcohol has a biphasic effect on the body, meaning that its effects change over time. Initially, alcohol typically produces feelings of relaxation and cheerfulness.

Increased consumption, however, can lead to dehydration, coordination problems, blurred vision, and a great number of health, medical, and social issues and other drinking problems caused by alcoholism.

As articulated above, excessive alcohol consumption can lead to drunkenness. One of the short term effects of intoxication is the lowering of an individual's inhibitions.

As a consequence, when people are intoxicated they frequently do things they normally would not do while sober, often ignoring legal, ethical, social, and moral or religious norms.

While blurred vision, slurred speech, dehydration, and diminished coordination can be labeled as "alcohol short term effects," other health problems such as alcohol related heart disease, liver disease, and cancer, on the other hand, can be labeled as long term effects of alcohol abuse and alcoholism.

This, however brief, is an overview of the effects of alcohol. What remains to be discussed, however, is what Paul Harvey calls "the rest of the story."

Essentially, "the rest of the story" is a more detailed analysis of how excessive alcohol affects an individual's life and the lives of those around him or her when the person becomes an alcoholic and suffers from alcoholism.

Perhaps the most logical way to discuss this complex topic is to focus first on the classic alcoholic behaviors and effects of alcohol in the four states of alcoholism; then examine some of the "social effects" of alcohol and alcoholism and finally, discuss the medical conditions, health issues, and drinking problems that are caused directly or indirectly by alcoholism.