26 Jul Excessive Alcohol Intake in Seniors
EXCESSIVE ALCOHOL INTAKE IN SENIORS: DETRIMENTAL EFFECTS AND HOW TO REDUCE IT
According to the World Health Organization (https://www.who.int/), harmful alcohol use contributes to the death of about 2.5 million people every year – that’s about 3% of all deaths worldwide. Unhealthy alcohol use includes chronic and heavy episodic drinking, which makes up nearly two-thirds of this. Moreover, it seems that men between 15 and 49 years old are more at risk than women in the same age group. However, we should note that regardless of age or gender, certain groups of people are even more vulnerable than others.
Excessive alcohol intake can have severe repercussions for seniors’ health, especially regarding memory impairment and confusion, but most seniors aren’t aware of the risks associated with their drinking habits. This article lists some facts about excessive alcohol intake in seniors and ways they can reduce their intake and still enjoy their favorite beverage while also improving their health and wellness.
Alcohol: The Main Cause of Liver Disease
According to the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/), drinking too much alcohol is the leading cause of liver disease. The liver is responsible for breaking down toxins in the body, so when it’s damaged, those toxins can build up and cause problems. Long-term excessive drinking can lead to cirrhosis when the liver starts to scar and doesn’t work properly. This can cause a whole host of other health problems, including death.
Most Seniors Over the Age of 65 Consume Alcoholic Drinks regularly
It’s no secret that many seniors enjoy a glass of wine or beer with their dinner. However, what may be surprising is that according to a recent study, 78% of seniors over 65 consume alcoholic drinks regularly. That means that more than three-quarters of older adults are periodically consuming alcohol.
What are the common side effects of drinking excessive amounts of alcohol?
Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, which slows down the brain and body. This can lead to slurred speech, poor coordination, drowsiness, and slowed reaction time. In extreme cases, alcohol poisoning can occur, which can lead to coma and even death. These side effects are exacerbated by age-related health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or dementia. It’s crucial for seniors with any of these conditions to speak with their doctor before making any changes to their medication routine that may result from drinking too much alcohol. Drinking excessively also increases your risk of injuries like falls and car accidents; some people also suffer from mental health problems like depression or anxiety due to excessive drinking.
Ways Senior Citizens Can Reduce Their Drinking Habit
There are many reasons why reducing excessive alcohol intake is beneficial for seniors, including improved mental and physical health, decreased risk of falls and injuries, and improved social interactions. Here are some tips for reducing excessive alcohol intake:
- Talk with your doctor. Ask your doctor if they recommend you stop drinking completely, cut back to a moderate level, or continue as usual. Your doctor may have other ideas depending on your overall health and situation. If you decide to change your drinking habits, ask for support from friends and family members who will be affected by this decision.
- Keep track of what you drink using an app like Recorder or My Alcohol Tracker. These apps can help track how much alcohol you’ve consumed during the day/week and provide statistics like an average number of drinks per week or number of drinks per occasion.
- Focus on regular outdoor activities. By utilizing the surrounding Melbourne, FL, area you can enjoy past activities that you may not have pursued in some time. There are also many beaches in the Indian Harbour Beach, FL, area that have many activities and walking to be enjoyed. The Residences at Zon Beachside has many amenities that allow regular outdoor activities which can be viewed by clicking Here.
- There are many resources available including https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/resources.htm.
In conclusion, excessive alcohol intake can have many detrimental effects on seniors. These include cognitive decline, an increased risk of falls and fractures, and social isolation. However, by reducing their alcohol intake, seniors can improve their health and wellbeing. If you or a loved one are struggling with excessive drinking, many resources are available to help you.