Is alcohol-induced dementia reversible?
As you may know, dementia is unfortunately an irreversible disease. Thankfully, alcohol-induced dementia in some cases is reversible. Early treatment is vital in treating alcohol induced dementia; if the condition is caught earlier on in its stages, patients are known to show impressive improvements. This reversible damage can only be achieved through professional medical help and willingness from the individual to help themselves.
Alcohol-induced dementia is caused by drinking excessive amounts of alcohol over a prolonged period of years. Alcohol for years has been known to medical professionals to severely impact how a person feels, thinks and acts whilst under the consumption. Many, unfortunately, don’t understand that the effects of drinking can result in long-term severe brain damage. Consuming large amounts of alcohol for a long duration has strong links towards one of the significant causes of dementia and many other forms of permanent brain damage.
EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL ON THE BRAIN
Many individuals consume a high amount of alcohol as it works as a depressant on the brain, slowing and dampening the nervous system. The brain suddenly stops processing the information as quickly as it used to, responses aren’t as logical, daily functions that you used to perform without thinking are now becoming a challenging task to complete, and inhibitions are being suppressed.
Individuals who drink heavily for years are more likely to have a reduced volume of the brain’s white matter, a chemical function that helps transmit signals between a variety of brain regions, this is ultimately the start of brain damage. Long-term, frequent alcohol consumption can also lead to a lack of vital vitamins such as thiamine B1; this deficiency can result in a disease called Korsakoff’s syndrome, a memory disorder that affects only short-term memory loss.
Excessive drinking can result in significant risks regarding cognitive deficits and long-term brain damage. The heavier and more prolonged the individual has been drinking, the higher the risk of irreparable alcohol-induced dementia. According to the CDC, “Alcohol is one of the most abused substances in the US. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, there is an average of 88,000 deaths each year related to binge drinking, heavy drinking, and other forms of alcohol use disorder.”
COMMON SYMPTOMS OF ALCOHOLIC DEMENTIA
Alcoholic induced dementia, not unlike Korsakoff’s syndrome, relates primarily to problems associated with an individual’s brain and its functions. The majority of early symptoms would hardly be noticed by anyone who wasn’t a professional. This can result in alcoholic dementia severely taking hold of the individual’s brain before any medical help has been introduced. These symptoms can include but are not limited to:
- Becoming too impulsive, poor decision making or risk assessments (e.g. related to financial decisions.
- Difficulty controlling all forms of emotions
- Poor organisation or planning skills
- Suffer from paying attention even for a couple of minutes and often become slower when responding
- Lack of or no sensitivity towards other people’s feelings
- Indulging in inappropriate social behaviour
- Loss of everyday memory
- Personality changes
- Severe problems with balance
General life skills that are learnt in the first three years of life, such as gestures and language genuinely stay unaffected but will take a little longer to complete, for example; understand what an individual has said, to think of a logical response, to communicating the response back.
ALCOHOL-INDUCED DEMENTIA PREVENTION
When it comes to alcohol-induced dementia, it is a lot easier to seek professional help to learn how to control and improve your drinking and lifestyle habits to prevent succumbing to the disease of alcohol-induced dementia, then it is to receive the treatment to help slow down the symptoms of the disease.
If you are looking for professional help to improve your overall lifestyle and alcohol consumptions, then look no further. Here at shoreline sober living, we have bespoke courses, tailored to your specific needs to get you back on track. Throughout some of our courses, individual and group therapy sessions, we will cover elements such as:
- Learn how to manage stress, depression, and anxiety through other means then alcohol consumption
- Group physical exercise and wellbeing lessons
- Understanding the type of nutrients your body needs
- Learn to be able to have a drink when with friends or family but not allow it to get to the stage where you are becoming addicted
- Keeping on track of cholesterol, blood pressure and body fat
- If you are a smoker, we will help you quit for good.
Individuals who have drunk excessively for long durations of time have to withdraw the alcohol from their system gradually. Considering going cold turkey can put your entire life at risk, resulting in symptoms such as:
- Severe anxiety and depression
- Intense tremors
- Heart problems
If you or a loved one consumes excessive amounts of alcohol, or have begun to show symptoms of signs relating to alcohol-induced dementia, do not wait to call a professional. Catching the disease early can reverse the effects, seek a professional and affordable sober living home for a greater chance of attaining sobriety.
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