Alcohol can trigger modifications in the structure and function of the blossoming brain, which continues to grow into a person's mid 20s, and it might have repercussions reaching far beyond adolescence.
In adolescence, brain development is defined by dramatic changes to the brain's structure, neural connections ("electrical wiring"), and physiology. These transformations in the brain alter everything from developing sexuality to emotionality and cognitive ability.
Not all component parts of the adolescent brain mature at the same time, which might put a juvenile at a disadvantage in particular scenarios. For example, the limbic areas of the brain develop earlier than the frontal lobes. The limbic areas regulate feelings and are connected with a juvenile's decreased level of sensitivity to risk. The frontal lobes are accountable for self-control, judgment, reasoning, problem-solving, and impulse control. Variations in maturation among parts of the brain can lead to rash choices or actions and a neglect for repercussions.
Ways Alcohol Affects the Human Brain
Alcohol affects a juvenile's brain growth in several ways. The results of juvenile drinking on specialized brain functions are discussed below.
Alcohol is a central nervous system sedative drug. Alcohol can seem to be a stimulant because, initially, it depresses the part of the human brain that controls inhibitions.
CORTEX-- Alcohol hampers the cerebral cortex as it works with information from a person's senses.
CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM-- When a person thinks about something he desires his body to undertake, the central nervous system-- the brain and the spine-- sends a signal to that part of the body. Alcohol hinders the central nervous system, making the person think, converse, and move more slowly.
FRONTAL LOBES -- The human brain's frontal lobes are essential for planning, forming concepts, decision making, and exercising self-discipline.
When alcohol affects the frontal lobes of the human brain, a person might find it tough to control his or her emotions and urges. The individual might act without thinking or might even become violent. Drinking alcohol over an extended period of time can injure the frontal lobes forever.
HIPPOCAMPUS-- The hippocampus is the portion of the brain in which memories are created.
When alcohol reaches the hippocampus, a person might have difficulty remembering something he or she just learned, such as a name or a telephone number. This can occur after just a couple of alcoholic beverages.
Drinking a great deal of alcohol quickly can trigger a blackout-- not being able to recall entire incidents, like what exactly he or she did the night before.
A person might find it difficult to learn and to hold on to knowledge if alcohol injures the hippocampus.
CEREBELLUM-- The cerebellum is essential for coordination, thoughts, and focus. When alcohol gets in the cerebellum, a person may have difficulty with these skills. After consuming alcohol, a person's hands might be so shaky that they cannot touch or grab things properly, and they might fail to keep their balance and fall.
HYPOTHALAMUS-- The hypothalamus is a little part of the brain that does an incredible number of the physical body's housekeeping tasks. Alcohol upsets the operation of the hypothalamus. After an individual consumes alcohol, blood pressure, appetite, thirst, and the urge to urinate intensify while body temperature and heart rate decrease.
Alcohol in fact chills the body. Drinking a lot of alcohol outdoors in cold weather can cause a person's physical body temperature to fall below normal.
A person might have difficulty with these abilities once alcohol goes into the cerebellum. After drinking alcohol, a person's hands might be so tremulous that they cannot touch or grab things properly, and they might fail to keep their balance and fall.
After a person alcoholic beverages alcohol, blood pressure, hunger, being thirsty, and the desire to urinate increase while physical body temperature and heart rate decline.
Alcohol in fact cools down the physical body. Consuming a lot of alcohol outdoors in cold weather can cause a person's physical body temperature to drop below normal.
additional assistance with alcohol abuse . . .
what does alcohol do to you ?