Effects of Alcohol Abuse
Alcoholism is a topic that hits close to home for me. Growing up I witnessed the negative effects alcoholism can have on not only your health, but family and social life as well. Now that I am grown and have developed my faith in God I know that as Christians, we are not supposed to drink excessively. Romans 13:13 (NIV) states, “3Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy.”
Out of the many health related risks of drinking, I would like to talk about those which I have witnessed most often during my career in the healthcare field. When I was working in memory care facilities, we would often get patients with alcohol induced Dementia. There is no cure for dementia, and it is a disease that slowly worsens. Alcohol supports the disease process and often makes it progress more quickly.
Another negative effect of drinking is depression. Many people drink because they are depressed and looking for an outlet, and many people fall into the trap of alcoholism and become depressed as the need for alcohol takes over their lives. I have witnessed this firsthand, being that my mother took up drinking after my father passed away. From sunrise to sunset my mother would drink. People who abuse alcohol and have depression are also more likely to abuse other substances and mix medications with alcohol, which is not recommended and can lead to other serious health problems.
Heavy drinking can slow down the body’s immune system, making it more susceptible to disease. When intoxicated, your body is not able to protect itself and preform functions needed to guard you from infections. People who drink are more likely to engage in risky sexual activity, which often results in contracting an infectious disease. The Bible warns of immoral acts like this. 1 Corinthians 6:18(NIV) “18Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body”.
In the state of Virginia, between the years of 2006-2010 there have been 1,871 documented alcohol related deaths alone. Imagine the amount of undocumented cases. I hope to one day see a world without alcohol abuse, very unlikely scenario but wouldn’t it be wonderful? I hope as Christians we can all remember the negative effects of alcohol abuse and abstain from partaking in excessive drinking. Remember to glorify God in all that you do and treat your body as a temple.
Freeman, D. (2011). 12 Health Risks of Chronic Heavy Drinking. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/addiction/features/12-health-risks-of-chronic-heavy-drinking#1
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Alcohol Related Disease Impact (ARDI) application, 2013. Available at