Alcohol Use Can Create Alterations In The Developing Brain

Alcohol consumption can cause modifications in the structure and operation of the developing brain, which continues to develop into an individual's mid 20s, and it may have repercussions reaching far beyond teenage years.

In adolescence, brain development is characterized by dramatic modifications to the brain's structure, neural connections ("circuitry"), and physiology. These transformations in the brain affect everything from emerging sexuality to emotionality and judgment.

Not all portions of the adolescent brain mature concurrently, which may put a youth at a disadvantage in specific circumstances. The limbic regions of the brain mature earlier than the frontal lobes. The limbic regions control emotions and are connected with a juvenile's decreased sensitivity to risk. The frontal lobes are responsible for self-control, judgment, reasoning, problem-solving, and impulse control. Differences in maturation amongst parts of the brain can lead to rash decisions or acts and a neglect for repercussions.

The way Alcohol Alters the Human Brain Alcohol affects an adolescent's brain development in numerous ways. The results of adolescent drinking on particular brain functions are discussed below. Alcohol is a central nervous system sedative. Alcohol can seem to be a stimulant because, to begin with, it depresses the part of the brain that manages inhibitions.

CORTEX-- Alcohol hampers the cerebral cortex as it works with details from a person's senses.

CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM-- When an individual thinks about something he wants his body to undertake, the central nervous system-- the brain and the spine-- sends a signal to that part of the physical body. alcohol impedes the central nervous system, making the person think, converse, and move less quickly.

FRONTAL LOBES -- The brain's frontal lobes are essential for organizing, creating concepts, making decisions, and employing self-discipline.

A person might find it difficult to control his or her emotions and urges once alcohol impacts the frontal lobes of the brain. The individual might act without thinking or may even become violent. Consuming alcohol over a long period of time can injure the frontal lobes permanently.

HIPPOCAMPUS-- The hippocampus is the portion of the brain in which memories are created. Once alcohol gets to the hippocampus, an individual might have trouble recalling a thing he or she just learned, such as a person's name or a telephone number. This can occur after just a couple of alcoholic beverages. Drinking a great deal of alcohol rapidly can cause a blackout-- not having the ability to recall entire happenings, like what exactly he or she did the night before. An individual may find it difficult to learn and to hold on to knowledge if alcohol damages the hippocampus.

CEREBELLUM-- The cerebellum is very important for coordination, ideas, and attention. Once alcohol enters the cerebellum, a person may have difficulty with these abilities. After drinking alcohol, an individual's hands might be so unsteady that they can't touch or take hold of things properly, and they may fail to keep their balance and fall.

HYPOTHALAMUS-- The hypothalamus is a little part of the brain that does a fantastic number of the body's housekeeping chores. Alcohol frustrates the operation of the hypothalamus. After a person drinks alcohol, blood pressure, appetite, thirst, and the urge to urinate intensify while body temperature level and heart rate decrease.

Alcohol in fact cools down the body. Drinking a lot of alcohol outdoors in cold weather can trigger a person's physical body temperature to fall below normal.

A person may have trouble with these abilities when alcohol gets in the cerebellum. After drinking alcohol, a person's hands might be so unsteady that they cannot touch or get hold of things properly, and they might lose their balance and fall.

After an individual alcoholic beverages alcohol, blood pressure, hunger, being thirsty, and the desire to urinate increase while body temperature levels and heart rate decrease.

Alcohol actually cools down the physical body. Consuming a lot of alcohol outdoors in cold weather conditions can trigger a person's physical body temperature to fall below normal.

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