News for nerds

What often starts as an experience ends in addiction. Yes, we are talking about alcohol consumption. As per health experts, if a person is drinking 80 ml of alcohol daily for almost 10 years, there are high chances of developing alcoholic hepatitis and cirrhosis. These diseases can lead to the painful death of the patients. But what are alcoholic hepatitis and cirrhosis?

Alcoholic Hepatitis is inflammation of the liver caused by too much drinking. Symptoms like yellow eyes, increasing stomach size due to fluid accumulation, fever, fatigue, and loss of appetite are red signals for the diseases. While cirrhosis is a chronic disease, the liver gets damaged due to a variety of causes.

As per Mayo Clinic, “Each time the liver is injured because of disease, excessive alcohol consumption or any other cause. The liver tends to repair itself.” It further states that, in the process, some scar tissue forms. As cirrhosis progresses, more and more scar tissue forms which make it difficult for the liver to function.

Dr Richa Sareen, Pulmonology, Fortis Hospital, Vasant Kunj, said that after drinking alcohol drowsiness, mood change, impulsive behaviour, slurred speech, diarrhoea, and vomiting among other effects are seen on the person. These are just the short-term impact of drinking but long-term effects are more serious and worrisome.

Dr Richa said issues like alcoholic hepatitis, cirrhosis, malnutrition, deficiencies of essential nutrients, persistent mood changes, insomnia, weakened immune system, and changes in libido and sexual function are chronic health issues. A heavy or regular drinker may feel good and in a leisurely mood after drinking but such drinks interfere with chemicals in the human brain that are vital for good physical and mental health.

Psychological issues like depression, stress, and anxiety are common symptoms. Moreover, heavy drinkers lose the power of decision-making and hence make them ineffective in their daily life struggles.