Effects Of Alcohol On Cognition

Brain damage is a normal and potentially serious consequence of long-term consumption of heavy alcohol.

It is quite interesting to find out how alcohol intake affects cognitive ability. While the effects of alcohol on cognition is dependent on a host of factors which includes, but is not limited to. Nutrition, family history and diet. The effect alcohol exerts on cognition is worthy of note.

Effects Of Alcohol On Cognition

Recent studies have established that heavy alcohol intake either in chronic or episodic manner, affects the cognitive ability of the user in a neuro psychological manner. That is, the brain and a great proportion of the nerves (the body’s electrical wires) associated with ‘law and order’ in the body are set at variance to each other. With the function of a sizable portion of the brain and the nerves forced to function sub-optimally. This, therefore leaves the user with: short attention span, confusion and pitiable forgetfulness. Chief among the negative effects of alcohol on the brain is the possibility of heavy drinkers to exhibit symptoms of Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. A condition in which an alcoholic is unable to remember new information for more than a few seconds. Usually not more than 3 seconds.

Effects Of Alcohol On Cognition

Intellectual Capacity

Furthermore, mild to moderate decline in intellectual capacity is experienced by most alcoholics. Alongside diminished brain size and reduced brain infra cellular activity. The age group exposed to this particular negative effect are the adolescents. It is particularly ill advised for adolescents to enter into a drinking spree. It cuts back on their ability to reason and solve problems. Alcohol, in this age group must be used with caution. Since a greater part of academic burden is carried within this age group. However, chronic or episodic and heavy alcohol use by people within this age group leads to a significant drop in the ability to reason. To solve problems and to use information provided to carry out a specific task successfully.

Moderate Alcohol Use

Mild  to moderate alcohol use in older people, about 55 to 60 years of age, has been found to act as a protective. It has been found that, alcohol use followed a U-shaped pattern, when compared with cognition. Therefore, it is believed that, mild alcohol use (less than a bottle a week), could wade off an onset of dementia associated with the elderly age group stated. Also, the possibility of developing Alzheimer’s disease is reduced significantly. Also, depression could be combated in such age group by mild to moderate alcohol use. This is however, not advisable for teenagers or adolescents, because, peer pressure could turn such a good use of mild to moderate alcohol intake into an addiction that could ruin a purposeful lifetime.