Do Alcoholics Get Drunk Faster or Build Tolerance?
Alcoholism is a cunning, baffling, and powerful disease. Those who struggle with alcoholism often experience a range of external consequences and behavioral changes inconsistent with other chronic diseases. For example, they might experience the loss of a job or career because they keep showing up to work intoxicated. They might experience the loss of a long-term marriage because they keep showing up drunk after work or because they began an affair while under the influence.
Alcoholism is a tricky disease, and because the symptoms are often behavioral, it can be difficult for people to fully understand why their loved one has been “acting out.” If they wanted to stop, they would stop, right? If they truly loved me, they would put down the bottle, work on the marriage, or stop drinking before big business meetings, right?
Getting Drunk Faster Than Usual
There are several reasons why you may get drunk faster than usual. One factor is your body weight and size, as a smaller body will feel the effects of alcohol more quickly than a larger one. Another factor is your tolerance, which can change over time based on the frequency and amount of alcohol you consume. Additionally, your metabolism and how quickly your liver processes alcohol can also affect how quickly you become intoxicated. Other factors, such as stress, fatigue, and certain medications, can also impact your body’s ability to process alcohol. This makes you feel drunk faster. Be aware of these factors and drink responsibly, as excessive drinking can have serious health consequences.
Alcoholism as a Chronic and Relapsing Disease
In reality, alcoholism is a chronic and relapsing brain disease that changes cognitive function over time. If a person drinks heavily and daily for an extended period, they develop physical alcohol dependence. Their brain tells them that if they stop drinking, they will die. As a result, alcohol becomes a priority even over basic human needs, including food, water, shelter, and sleep. It is extremely painful to watch someone you care for fall victim to alcoholism.
Over time, the alcoholic becomes a shell of his or her former self. They might even be unrecognizable. In addition, the body starts to process alcohol differently than it did before, leading to a host of serious health-related complications. The good news is that recovery is always possible, and in many cases, the physical symptoms of alcohol abuse can be adequately reversed with prolonged sobriety.
Physical Tolerance of Alcohol After Long-Term Use
Over time, people who drink heavily (regardless of whether or not they are alcoholics) will begin to develop a physical tolerance. This means they can drink more alcohol than they could previously without feeling the desired effects. In other words, it takes more booze to get them drunk. So do alcoholics get drunk faster? By these standards, no — it takes them longer to feel intoxicated. Getting drunk faster is typically reserved for those with a lower tolerance.
Recent studies show that alcoholics experience the same level of impairment as other people regardless of how much they drink and even if they feel like they can function properly. This can be extremely dangerous. Why? Because an alcoholic who has consumed a 12-pack of beer might feel okay to drive to the store and purchase more, but in reality, they drive as well as someone with a low tolerance which has consumed the same amount. Alcohol-induced car accidents are one of the leading causes of accidental death in the U.S. The vast majority of these accidents and related fatalities are preventable. Contact us today to learn more.
Agape Treatment Center and Alcoholism Recovery
Alcoholism is one of the country’s most common mental health concerns, but it is also most commonly stigmatized. This often makes seeking professional care difficult. As a result, many people who struggle with a diagnosable alcohol abuse disorder fail to recognize they need help or remain in a place of stubborn denial. In some cases, staging an intervention is the best possible solution. If you have a loved one who refuses to admit that drinking has become an issue, we are happy to put you in touch with a licensed and highly experienced interventionist who will help you prompt your loved ones to seek the help they need.
Suppose you have personally been struggling with drinking, and you are unsure whether or not you have a diagnosable alcohol abuse disorder. In that case, we can also help you determine if professional alcohol addiction treatment has become necessary. Contact Agape Treatment Center directly through our website or over the phone. We will help get you, or a loved one started on your journey of alcohol abuse recovery.