Alcohol abuse has a long list of terrible effects – physically, psychologically and emotionally. Alcohol abuse detrimentally affects many systems of the body such as the neurological system, the digestive system and even the skeleton.
The Effects of Alcohol Abuse on the Skeleton
Alcohol abuse can be very dangerous in many different ways. Alcohol impairs judgment and can lead to consumers doing things and going to places that they normally would not – including such acts as driving under the influence.
Besides the societal and legal risks of alcohol abuse, alcohol also affects drinkers psychologically and can lead to further problems such as depression or anxiety or exacerbate such problems that may already be present. Alcohol abuse can also bring serious damage to important parts of the body including the brain, liver, stomach and the skeleton.
Teenagers who abuse alcohol can find themselves in plenty of trouble when it comes to their skeletons. Estrogen production is decreased in the presence of alcohol abuse and the hormone is an important factor in the formation of the skeleton.
Alcohol abuse is a fast and efficient way to lose vital nutrients, including the nutrients required to form bones. These important nutrients include magnesium, calcium and other minerals required for a healthy and proper functioning skeleton.
As if the increase of risk for slips and falls while under the influence of alcohol isn’t bad enough, alcohol abuse leading to weaker bones can make bones break much more easily. The combination of a loss of balance or lessened balance and weaker bones leads to one risky and dangerous situation.
Another way that alcohol abuse can lead to broken bones is through the risk of developing the bone disease osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a disease that drastically weakens or thins bones so that even minor bumps or falls can cause serious damage. One dietary nutrient that helps ward off osteoporosis is calcium and calcium is depleted from the body as a side effect of alcohol abuse.
Of course, it’s not just bones that make up the skeleton – joints are also an important part of the skeletal system. Alcohol abuse can increase the risk for the development of osteoarthritis; a condition that breaks down cartilage to no end. This disease just gets worse over time and there is no cure. There are treatments to alleviate symptoms to some degree but it’s truly a difficult condition that affects major body parts including the hips and the neck.
If you or someone you love is suffering from the effects of alcohol abuse, substance addiction or any other type of addiction, please call us today. Our addiction treatment counselors can help you deal with physical, emotional and psychological consequences of drug and alcohol abuse. A substance abuse treatment program is effective, safe and has helped many men reclaim their lives. Destination Hope is a full service drug, alcohol and dual diagnosis treatment facility in Florida for men suffering from substance abuse and mental health issues.