In 2017, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that over 14 million Americans were dealing with alcohol use disorder. As a result, these people had to deal with alcohol’s effects both in the short- and long-term. In fact, there are many different ways in which alcohol can effect your body. Knowing these effects can help your determine when it might be time to cut back on your drinking…

Alcohol’s Effects: The Short- and Long-Term


Alcohol’s effects in the short-term are probably the most well-known. These effects tend to usually show up when someone has more than one drink per hour. However, it depends on many factors, such as a person’s age, weight, gender, and overall health. Some of the more milder effects can include flushed skin, dulled vision, and trouble with coordination and concentration.

However, there are some more severe short-term effects to watch out for. These can include vomiting, lower body temperatures, and passing out. Lowered inhibitions might be one of the most dangerous short-term effects. This can cause a person to make some pretty poor decisions while they’re under the influence.


Alcohol’s effects in the long-term can take some time to show up. Unlike short-term effects, the long-term ones gradually happen over time as you drink. They are especially prevalent in heavy alcohol drinkers. These are the drinkers who drink nearly every day, and usually in heavy amounts.

Long-term effects tend to show themselves in potential physical and mental health issues. These can include memory loss, high blood pressure, and cancer in places like the mouth, throat, and stomach. The most common place to see these effects in is the liver. Liver damage is all too common in those who experience the effects of long-term drinking.

Possible benefits?

Recently, there has been some study into if some of alcohol’s effects can be positive. For instance, alcohol’s social use makes some see it as a valuable tool for helping people relax and talk to one another. Some studies also think alcohol could be linked to things such as lower risks of heart attacks, stroke, and diabetes. 

However, this only applies to moderate drinking. Excessive drinking will only cause you problems. Also, don’t start drinking and think you’ll receive these benefits. Not only are they not 100% confirmed, but there are healthier, safer ways to achieve similar results.