Nobody knows for sure how long the Covid-19 pandemic is going to last. Even with different vaccines going around, we still not safe like it was pre-Covid-19. Because of this, the need to work from home is still on the rise.

To curb the spread of the virus, companies are opting their staff to work from home. While this may favor some individuals, it’s a ticking time bomb for others. Think about it: working from home means minimal to no supervision.

It’s therefore not a secret that most folks would get to uncontrolled drinking when they should be working. “I only have a glass a day. That’s all!” They often say. Before they know it, they’ve switched into heavy drinking. If you can relate to this, there’s still some hope for you!

In today’s post, we’ll look into the dangers of heavy drinking during the Covid-19 pandemic. Our joy is in seeing you or your loved ones healthy and safe.  Hopefully, you’ll find this helpful. 

So, let’s get to it!

What is Heavy Drinking?

The term heavy drinking can be relative since it may not mean the same thing for everyone. According to research by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heavy drinking is defined as drinking more than eight glasses per week for women and 15 glasses or more per week for men. 

It can also be associated with binge drinking. For women, binge drinking is four or more drinks consumed on one occasion. On the other hand, for men, it is five or more drinks consumed on one occasion. Usually, an occasion lasts between 2-3 hours, according to the CDC report.

Related: Overcoming Addiction: Make the Most of Your Time in Addiction Treatment

Signs you’re an Alcoholic

Alcohol consumption is addictive, and it doesn’t come as a surprise when you fall into addiction without your knowledge. So, how can one tell, you ask? Below are the signs of an alcoholic.

  • You can’t just stop drinking: When you find yourself drinking even when you don’t want to, it’s usually a clear sign of alcohol addiction.
  • Experiencing hangovers: Hangovers come about after you’ve had a lot to drink. Experiencing hangovers when you aren’t drinking is a good sign.
  • Finding a reason for drinking: Alcoholics always find excuses and scapegoats to blame for their drinking.
  • Neglecting work: Alcoholics are good at abandoning work for a drink or two.
  • Mood swings: Having too much to drink has a way of affecting moods. If you’re experiencing frequent mood swings, it could be a sign of addiction.
  • Memory loss and blackouts: Experiencing temporary blackouts or memory loss posits a sign of addiction. It gets worse if you have to grab a drink to feel better.

There are a ton more signs, but these will suffice for today. 

Dangers of Heavy Drinking During Covid-19

The effects of heavy drinking are multi-dimensional and affect a wide spectrum of your life. The dangers have a ripple effect on your health, work, immediate family, and society. So, what are these dangers of heavy drinking we’re talking about?

Let’s find out!

1. Slurred Speech

In their comprehensive article, ‘Alcohol and Slurred Speed,’ the editorial staff of American Addiction Center articulates how alcohol consumption affects one’s speech. Alcohol consumption causes Dysarthria. 

Among the signs of Dysarthria are; mumbling—speaking softly or in a whisper. As you can see, this is what happens when you take alcohol when you should be working. Eventually, this affects your productivity, especially if your work involves talking with others.

2. Impaired Judgment

American Addiction Center puts it clearly, “Alcohol slows down how information is processed in the brain. When you see, hear, taste, or smell something, your brain processes this information and then tell you how to think or feel.”

Unfortunately, alcohol in your blood system interferes with this process. Thus making it a hassle to know how you’re feeling or what you should do in a situation. What’s the science behind this? You could be wondering.

According to the article, alcohol affects your brain, especially the Prefrontal cortex. This part of the brain has a stake in influencing your emotions, behavior, and willpower. Therefore, heavy drinking during Covid-19 can gravely affect your judgment.

3. Blurred Vision

Some of the short-term effects of alcohol include blurred vision and double vision. These are temporary effects that last for as long as the person is intoxicated. In the long term, heavy drinking can affect eyesight in more severe ways.

For example, you risk developing eye cataracts after a long period of heavy drinking. This can be devastating and frustrating, with the ripple effect being losing your job. Believe it or not, you may go blind when the cataracts are out of control.

4. Headaches

As Jennifer Robinson of WebMD puts it, Alcohol consumption has a role to play in headaches and migraines. According to her research, Alcohol has by-products known as congeners which are the leading cause of headaches and migraines.

Furthermore, the study shows how alcohol contains histamine, a chemical that causes body inflammation. And to top it up, the ethanol in alcohol is converted to a chemical that triggers headaches.

5. Stomach Pain

In a study done by Drinkaware, alcohol triggers more than usual acid production in the stomach. When this is out of control, it can cause gastritis, leading to inflammation of the stomach lining. The inflammation is associated with stomach pains, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The worst thing is, this is only caused by mild consumption of alcohol. This should worry you if you’re a heavy drinker or knows someone who does. The effects can be catastrophic!

Final Thoughts: Seek Help while you can

Heavy drinking during the Covid-19 pandemic and when working from home may seem a fun thing to do. In the long run, the dangers are more devastating more than you can imagine. Sadly, it does affect not only your health but also your work productivity.

The good news is, you can find help for yourself or another victim before it is late. Feel free to reach out to Covenant Hills Treatment Center. We’re currently located in Orange County, CA, and are excited to have you around.