Alcohol and Aging: All About This Substance’s Aging Effects

Jun 2021 Alcohol and Aging: All About This Substance’s Aging Effects

Because alcohol is legal and so easily accessible, many people forget that it’s technically a drug and is thus addictive. In fact, there are many negative effects of alcohol abuse. For example, consuming too much alcohol can have negative effects on the appearance of a person’s skin. This, in turn, makes consuming alcohol and aging of the skin often co-occur. 

What Exactly Is Alcohol?

Alcohol is a drink that’s made from fermented grains and fruits. The primary ingredient within all alcoholic beverages that make them drugs is ethanol. Thus, it’s the ethanol in alcoholic drinks that makes people feel drunk. 

Alcohol is a depressant. Therefore, although many people initially feel a burst of euphoric energy when consuming it, they’ll eventually feel slowed down. In fact, drinking alcohol will slow down people’s speech, reaction time, and movement. 

The Dangers of Alcohol 

Eventually, consuming too much alcohol can cause a person to lose consciousness and blackout. Consuming too much alcohol can also cause people to develop alcohol poisoning. 

Many people who consume alcohol start abusing it to feel the drunk and euphoric effects that it causes. Other people may start abusing alcohol to help them forget about things. Some people will even abuse alcohol to cope with their mental illnesses or personal life struggles. 

Regardless of why people may start consuming large amounts of alcohol, doing so can have negative effects on their physical and mental health. Furthermore, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can have negative effects on people’s skin that cause them to look older. 

Effects of Alcohol on Skin and Aging

Ways Alcohol Can Deter the Human Body from Healing ItselfDoes alcohol age your appearance? Yes, there is a number of ways that alcohol can age a person’s appearance. It shouldn’t be a surprise that consuming alcohol can age a person’s appearance, though. For one, alcohol is a diuretic. This means that it pulls fluid out of the human body to be eliminated. 

Alcohol also reduces the amount of vasopressin that the body makes. Vasopressin is a hormone that helps the body retain water. Thus, alcohol can cause the body to eliminate water while simultaneously reducing the body’s ability to retain water. As a result, consuming too much alcohol dries out the body’s internal and external organs, including the skin. 

Human skin needs hydration to remain plump and youthful. Drying out the skin by drinking too much alcohol causes the skin to age quicker.  

Increases Formation of Lines and Wrinkles

When skin becomes dry and dehydrated, it becomes less plump and loses elasticity. As a result, the skin can fold and form lines and wrinkles more easily. This, in turn, ages a person’s appearance. 

Ages Skin Around Eyes

The eyes are the windows to a person’s soul. Therefore, the eyes are often the place on the body where people look when conversing with one another. Unfortunately, the eyes are also the place on the body where the skin is the thinnest. Thus, it’s one of the places on the skin that shows physical signs of aging the quickest. 

Because the skin on and around the eyes ages so quickly, many people take extra precautions to keep the skin in that area looking youthful. For example, some people may get botox put in the skin around their eyes. Other people may put de-aging eye cream on the skin on and around their eyes. 

However, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol is one way to make all those efforts be done in vain. This is because regularly drinking large amounts of alcohol dries out the skin and makes it easier for people to develop crow’s feet, wrinkly bags under their eyes, as well as other lines and wrinkles on and around their eyelids. 

Negatively Affects Blood Vessels

Alcohol Can Deter the Human Body from Healing ItselfAs people naturally age, the broken capillaries or blood vessels near the surface of the skin become more visible. Alcohol dilates these tiny, broken capillaries. Thus, drinking too much alcohol can cause these blood vessels to burst and form red spots and spidery splotches on the skin that ages a person’s physical appearance. 

Ways Alcohol Can Deter the Human Body from Healing Itself

Another key reason why drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can age a person’s physical appearance is that it deters the human body from fully healing. This is because of the many ways that consuming too much alcohol can put a strain on the human body’s ability to function. 

It Disrupts Sleep

Drinking alcohol has negative effects on a person’s sleep patterns. This is partly because drinking alcohol reduces the amount of time that a person spends in the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep. Therefore, although a person may be able to fall asleep easily while under the influence of alcohol, he or she will likely not be able to stay asleep. 

A lack of REM sleep for long periods of time ages people. This is because it’s during long periods of REM sleep that the body heals and revitalizes itself. Thus, disrupting one’s ability to receive REM sleep for extended periods of time due to drinking alcohol can wear down a person’s body. By being worn down, the body also physically ages quicker. 

It Causes Oxidative Stress

Oxidative stress is an imbalance in the production and accumulation of oxygen reactive species in cells/tissues. This makes it so that a biological system won’t be able to detoxify these reactive products. 

Oxidation stress damages DNA and leads to premature aging. It can especially lead to damaged DNA and premature aging if it’s imbalanced due to consuming an excessive amount of substances, such as alcohol, that form more free radicals than the body can handle. Free radicals are molecules in the body that can lead to a higher risk of disease and illness. 

It Makes It Harder to Uphold Healthy Habits

Alcohol and AgingDrinking excessive amounts of alcohol is very unhealthy for a number of reasons. For example, excessive drinking can lead to liver damage, disease, or failure, extreme dehydration, and an imbalance of oxidation stress. 

Oxidation stress can lead to damaged DNA and premature aging. Additionally, it can cause a loss of cognition and memory, chemical changes in the brain that lead to alcoholism, and more. Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can also slow a person down and make it harder to think and function. This, in turn, will make it harder to make other healthy life choices. 

How Alcohol Leads to an Unhealthy Lifestyle 

Due to the sluggish nature that consuming large amounts of alcohol causes, many people that excessively drink are sedentary. Being sedentary is extremely harmful to a person’s health as it can age a person’s cells by numerous years. Being sedentary can even lead to negative changes in a person’s cells that cause cancer. 

Alcoholic beverages sometimes contain large amounts of sugar. Thus, excessively drinking alcoholic beverages can lead to inflammation and weight gain. 

Alcohol even damages brain cells. Therefore, consuming large amounts of alcohol can negatively affect a person’s judgment, focus, memory, and sense of balance. Over time, such negative effects can lead to the overall aging of the body and mind. Alcohol consumption can even lead to the development of osteoporosis, which is a disease that older people often get. 

Can a Person Reverse the Aging Effects of Alcohol Consumption?

When it comes to alcohol and aging, a person may not be able to reverse the aging and damage that previous alcohol use has caused. People can proactively improve their health and greatly slow down the aging process, though, by not drinking alcohol. 

For people that want to continue drinking alcohol but still add years to their lives, they can have a couple of drinks occasionally. People that want to add years to their lives to counterbalance the damage that excessive alcohol consumption has caused can also exercise, get full nights of sleep, and eat healthily. 

Counterbalance the Effects of Alcohol and Aging By Receiving Alcohol Addiction Treatment At Phoenix Rising Recovery

It’s important to remember that a person doesn’t have to drink excessively to experience many of the skin and aging effects. Over time, regularly drinking alcohol can also start to take a toll on the body and cause a person to age. Therefore, all alcohol drinkers should make a conscious effort to drink responsibly while also eating healthily, sleeping, and exercising.  

People that excessively abuse alcohol can develop alcohol addictions. Alcohol addictions will only ruin overall health further. Therefore, another way to counterbalance the effects of abuse of alcohol and aging is to attend alcohol detox followed by addiction treatment. 

Choose Phoenix Rising for Alcohol Detox and Treatment 

Phoenix Rising Recovery is the perfect place to receive quality alcohol addiction treatment. This is because here at Phoenix Rising Recovery, we strive to provide our clients with recovery options that truly revitalize their minds and bodies. That way, Phoenix Rising Recovery patients can learn how to improve their physical and mental health while in addiction treatment and recovery. By making a conscious effort to improve one’s physical and mental health while recovering from alcohol addiction, individuals will be able to add years to their lives, which will counterbalance the effects of alcohol on skin and aging.

Here at Phoenix Rising Recovery, we offer a range of substance abuse treatment programs and addiction counseling services that can put you on the path to recovery. To learn more about Phoenix Rising Recovery and all the reasons why it’s the ideal place to treat your substance addictions, contact us! Our staff is more than willing to answer any questions that you may have.