Alcohol – an important issue for a woman’s health

Although the fact is that men drink more often and in larger quantities, women are more likely to experience problems related to drinking it. Even if both drink the same dose, alcohol in the woman’s bloodstream usually reaches a higher concentration than in a man. This is because a woman’s body usually contains less water than a man’s body. Alcohol mixes with water in the body, so a woman’s dose is less diluted. Therefore, drinking alcohol is more damaging to women and they are more susceptible to associated organ damage: online rehab services.

This means that women get it in less time and at lower doses.
If one additionally considers that one-third of Americans admit to systematic drinking and 2.3% of women, or 2.5 million, meet the criteria for addiction [2], the important role of research that would allow better understand the effects of alcohol on women. This issue of Alcohol Alert summarizes some of the most practical research implications for women at different times in their lives.

Growing up – creating conditions

A nationwide study shows that alcohol consumption is common among both adolescents and young adults. Although young men drink more often, the number of young women drinking in this way is also alarmingly high.
Growing up is an essential stage of human development. Rapidly changing body functions are particularly sensitive to the effects of alcohol. Drinking during accelerated puberty – cerebral and hormonal – can therefore have long-term effects .

There are visible physical changes in the brain as you grow up. The prefrontal cortex, the area of ​​the brain responsible for various intentional behaviors, undergoes significant changes. The amygdala, the brain structure responsible for emotional responses and coordinating the body’s response to stress, is also subject to development. Changes in these areas have a huge impact on the behavior and mental functioning of the adolescent. As a result, some teens are more likely to take risky behaviors, such as experimenting with alcohol or drugs.

In one study, researchers found that adolescents who had major problems with alcohol drinking, the hippocampus scroll, an area of ​​the brain important for learning and memory, were significantly smaller than those in the control group. The results of a limited-scale study suggest that in adult women, brain areas shrink more easily than men. It is not yet known, however, whether this also applies to adolescent girls.
Adolescence is a time of turbulent changes in hormone levels and patterns. Gender differences are also beginning to appear in the body’s hormonal response to stress.

Some girls may be particularly vulnerable to emotional difficulties, depression and self-image problems, as well as an increase in the number of risky behaviors. In addition, they can be particularly sensitive to stress during early adolescence. In turn, the level of stress experienced turned out to be the strongest predictor of alcohol consumption and drug use, immediately after the use of psychoactive substances by peers.

Based on the final results from animal studies, it can be assumed that alcohol affects adolescents differently than adults. When drinking, they do not lose coordination and are not as drowsy as adults. However, they seem more sensitive to alcohol-induced disturbances in certain types of memory. Of course, more research is needed to explain how gender differences can affect how alcohol affects the growing brain of the adolescent and other organs. However, it is known that the earlier you start drinking, the greater the likelihood of alcohol problems later in life.

Childbearing period

Drinking alcohol can affect women’s reproductive functions at specific stages of life. Some studies suggest that adolescents, who regularly drink even moderate amounts of alcohol, are at risk of developing development disorders, proper pace and progress in puberty. Intense drinking has been shown to disrupt the normal menstrual cycle and reproductive function. Alcohol abuse and dependence on it affects reproduction, starting with infertility and an increased risk of miscarriage, and ending with impaired fetal growth and development.

Author: addiction recovery guides