Alcohol and Mental Health
Alcohol is often a method of making us change the way we feel in different situations, to relax after a stressful day, celebrate or to forget what has happened in the past. Greater problems occur, when drink is used to mask over problems like anxiety and stress that will have a further implication on ones Mental Health later down the line.
We often think drink and Alcohol can have a positive effect on our lives making us feel better in the short term when actually in the long term it can have a detrimental impact on our mental health, linking to issues such as depression, anxiety and suicide.
How alcohol affects how we process
Our brains work with balancing chemicals and processes and when alcohol is consumed this messages became affected, as alcohol is a depressant, it can affect the process, thoughts and actions we have sometimes disrupting our Mental Health long term.
When we start to feel more relaxed and less anxious the more we drink, the part of our brain that is controlling what we call our 'inhibitions' is becoming depressed, dulling the chemical processes we would normal have occurring.
In addition to the relaxed side you may feel, alcohol can also lead to negative aspects of mood and actions that are associated with Mental Health, namely aggressive behaviour, angry and anxious or depressed.
Warning signs drink is having an impact on your Mental Health
- Feeling tired and lethargic all the time.
- low mood.
- stressed or anxious in situations you would normally feel at ease in.
Methods to help prevent Alcohol affecting your mood and Mental Health
- Using exercise and relaxation methods to control stress.
- Talk to someone about what is worrying you, to help release tension or burden.
- Learn techniques to control breathing when feeling anxious.
- Continue to be ware of your levels of drinking and try not to become habitual with your drinking.
'FACT- Anxiety and Depression are more common in heavy drinkers.' (drinkaware.co.uk)