Alcohol’s Effect on Long-Term Stress

Alcohol's Effect on Long-Term Stress

In some individuals, alcohol may induce rather than reduce the body’s response to stress.

Each consumer of alcohol experiences different side effects with different amounts. Because of this, one may exhibit short-term reduction in stress levels, while another individual may drink the same amount and still feel extremely stressed. What happens when our attempts to reduce stress actually increase our stress levels?

How Does Alcohol Interact with Stress?

According to researchers from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, high levels of stress may influence an individual to consume alcohol when:

  • Alternative resources are lacking
  • When alcohol is accessible
  • When an individual believes alcohol will help reduce stress

Numerous studies, which clarify the connection between alcohol and stress, found many individuals reported they would drink in response to stress and continue to do so for a variety of reasons. These reasons could be using alcohol as a coping mechanism with economic stress, marital problems and absence of social support. Research also found that the greater or more severe the stress, the greater the alcohol consumption. Some studies have reported that low doses of alcohol may help reduce an individual’s response to stress; however, in some individuals, certain doses may induce rather than reduce the body’s response to stress.

Alternatives to Alcohol Abuse

Although sobriety is not an easy process, the following steps can be taken to help ease some of the temptations to drink:

  • Passing in social situations
  • Replacing alcoholic beverages
  • Alcohol-free environments

One of the most frustrating issues for a recovering alcoholic in social situations is being offered drinks. This can make a recovering addict feel uncomfortable and places them in jeopardy of relapse. A non-alcoholic beverage, served in the right glass might be enough to help detour others from applying pressure to drink. As humans, we are creatures of habit. Because alcoholics ingest more fluids than the average individual, an oral fixation is likely to occur. After becoming sober, the recovering addict may still have the impulse to continue drinking some sort of beverage, due to his past. Simply replacing alcohol with another non-alcoholic beverage could be beneficial. For any alcoholic, simply setting foot in an environment where alcohol is present and consumed can be too much to bear. Simply the presence of alcohol may lead to temptation and evoke painful memories or discomfort. Because of this, avoiding environments where alcohol is known to be can help an addict avoid relapse and remain on course with his sobriety.

Alcohol Addiction Treatment

If a loved one is addicted to alcohol and his addiction is negatively affecting his life, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our highly trained and professional counselors are available 24 hours a day to answer your addiction questions and help you find the best treatment available. Stop wishing your life was better and call us today to make it better!