Destination Hope Blog » How Alcohol Abuse Impacts Your Eyes

How Alcohol Abuse Impacts Your Eyes

Alcohol abuse has short and long term implications for the human body.  In addition to the immediate effects felt after consuming one drink, drinking alcohol in large quantities, frequently or binge drinking can lead to long-term complications on your health.

People suffering from alcohol abuse know the way that their eyes feel after a night of drinking- dry, red and itchy.  This is a result of dehydration, but these are only a few of the complications alcohol causes to the eyes.

The Acute Effects of Alcohol Abuse

We all know that alcohol impacts the brain, depressing its functions.  That’s why there are so many laws against drinking and driving- because our reaction time is reduced after drinking alcohol.

In addition, alcohol also causes blurred vision, difficulty focusing and double vision.  These conditions are caused by the lack of coordination between the eye muscles.  It is extremely dangerous to get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol since both your brain function and your eyes are impaired!

Short term effects of alcohol abuse also include dry eye, redness or tunnel vision.  Tunnel vision is the result of the decreased sensitivity of your peripheral vision; you literally are not registering things out of your main field of view.

Chronic Alcohol Abuse

Chronic alcohol abuse can result in malnutrition.  Besides the physical impact on the body and the body’s functions, malnutrition also causes nutritional degeneration of the nervous system.  Without the proper vitamins and minerals, important nerves in the body, like the optic nerve, start to degenerate, reducing their ability to function properly.

Optic nerve degeneration or optic neuropathy, can lead to reduced vision, blind spots and even reduced color vision.  Malnutrition also compromises your immune system, making you vulnerable to eye infections that can damage the muscles and tissues in the eye.

Damage to areas of the eye like the retina or cornea can result in cloudy vision or blurred vision.  Alcohol abuse that leads to malnutrition will also rob your eyes of vitamins and minerals, some of which are essential for good eye health and function.  For example, a lack of vitamin A can result in night blindness.

Alcohol abuse and other types of addiction are treatable and many people live healthy sober lives after rehab.  The process begins with taking the opportunity to seek help and heal the body.  The human body begins to heal the moment the substance abuse stops, so it is never too late to start a sober lifestyle.

Many people find their recovery journey to be inspiring and a powerful reminder of how much they are loved and wanted.

If you or someone you love is suffering from alcohol abuse, substance dependency or addiction, please call us today.  Our counselors can help you deal with physical, emotional and psychological consequences of drug and alcohol abuse.

Substance abuse treatment 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.