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Discover the surprising truth about alcohol’s impact on our brain and behaviour

Alcohol is thought to make us who we really are, breaking down the barriers of societal pressures and letting us wind down after a hard week of work. Turns out, it’s doing the opposite. 

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Alcohol has an immediate effect on our brain function, altering our cognitive abilities. Despite its common use for relaxation, sleep, and social enjoyment, it can also be misused to cope with life’s challenges. 

The frontal lobe, responsible for attention, planning, and learning, is impacted by alcohol, diminishing our cognitive abilities. This impairment can make us feel a bit less sharp, a sentiment we can all agree with. 

Additionally, alcohol stimulates the brain’s reward centre, providing a pleasurable experience. It also influences the amygdala, reducing our emotional responses to the world. These combined effects create the illusion of inhibition, making us believe we can be our true selves under the influence of alcohol.

However, recent research challenges this notion. Alcohol’s effects on the brain lead to short-sightedness, prioritising immediate considerations over long-term consequences. This skewed perspective significantly affects our behaviour and emotions. Have you ever felt intense anger toward someone while drunk, only to realise its insignificance the next day?

You may have seen news stories about alcohol-induced violence, such as coward punches or one-punch violence. Alcohol narrows our perception, turning minor irritations into imminent threats that demand action. Instead of relying on our rational thinking to avoid conflicts, alcohol pushes us towards impulsive reactions.

Alcohol essentially transforms our brain into a short-term reward system, hindering our ability to consider the long-term effects of our actions. 

If you’re using alcohol as a sleep aid or a coping mechanism, remember that there are healthier alternatives available. However, if you enjoy alcohol in moderation during social events, exercise caution and embrace responsible enjoyment.

At Health Stack, we offer solutions for sleep and fatigue, emotional intelligence training, and stress management workshops to help reduce reliance on alcohol. Our mobile doctors are available to provide guidance and resources for personal growth. 

Join us in the national Dry July campaign and gain access to our support package, including some Health Stack-inspired mocktail recipes.

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