Alcohol use among older people is relatively common. Still, as a general rule, most people drink less as they age. However, this is not always the case. Some develop serious alcohol problems later in life. Some experience an exacerbation of existing alcoholism. In both cases, the result can be an urgent need for alcoholism treatment. Older people are also at increased risk of many other alcohol-related harms.
Age-related changes in how the body processes alcohol
As you age, your body begins to undergo various changes. One key area of change is metabolism. The term describes the basic ability of a system to take in food and drink and turn it into energy. It can also refer to how quickly your body can remove toxins from food and drink.
Alcohol is a rich source of calories. It also puts a large toxin load on the brain and body. As we age, our metabolism of beer, wine and alcoholic beverages slows down. This slower metabolic rate can lead to weight gain. Importantly, it can also lead to increased amounts of alcohol in the bloodstream. As a result, levels of drinking that were harmless decades ago can now cause serious problems.
Does alcoholism get worse with age?In some cases the answer is yes
These facts help explain why some older people develop alcohol use disorders only later in life. They also explain why some older people unaffected by alcoholism still struggle with severe alcohol abuse. It also explains why existing alcoholism can get worse if not treated properly.
In each of these scenarios, the main age-related causes are the same. Simply put, alcohol has a stronger effect than when you were younger. As a result, even relatively moderate drinking can cause major problems.
Also, as we age, we tend to drink more. Various factors may contribute to this kind of upward trend, including:
- Death of a spouse or someone close to you
- social isolation
- Moving to a new home or living environment
- poor health
All of these things can make you feel depressed or depressed. Conversely, you may resort to using alcohol as a false self-medication. This can occur regardless of whether you already have a diagnosable drinking problem.
Other Possible Effects of Excessive Drinking on Older Adults
Excessive drinking can also cause other forms of serious harm to older people. The list of such hazards includes the increased risk of:
- multiple forms of cancer
- liver and kidney disease
- brain injury
- dysfunction of the immune system
- memory problems
This includes the potential for many chronic health conditions to worsen. Diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis have the greatest impact. Older people should also be aware of the different ways alcohol interacts with prescription drugs. In addition, drinking late in life can greatly increase the risk of falls and other serious accidents.
Does alcoholism get worse with age?For more information, see Promises Right Step
Does alcoholism get worse with age? Not always. Some older people improve with the help of well-designed alcohol treatment programs. However, age-related factors can actually intensify the effects of alcoholism if help is not available.
Have more questions about the risks to you or your loved ones? Talk to the experts at Promises Right Step. You can also rely on Promises for high-quality alcoholism treatment customized to your specific needs. First, please call. 17135283709. You can also contact us using our simple online information form.