Home / What Alcohol Abuse Does to Your Liver


What Alcohol Abuse Does to Your Liver

Alcohol significantly affects the body’s organs over both the short and long term, including the liver. One of the vital functions of the liver is to aid in the breakdown of chemicals and the removal of poisons from the body. Long-term and excessive alcohol use can overwhelm the liver and impair its capacity to filter alcohol, causing irreparable damage to the liver’s cells. One of the most frequent causes of liver damage is alcohol.

Normal liver regeneration of destroyed cells is prevented by scarring brought on by the alcohol-related liver illness. Even a few days of heavy drinking can damage liver cells by causing fat to build up there. If a person who has fatty liver disease continues to use alcohol, the condition could worsen and result in

The Functions of the Liver in the Body

Under the ribs, on the upper right side of the belly, is where the liver is situated. It is a significant and intricate organ with several functions. It creates bile to aid in the digestion of meals, purges blood from toxins, and aids in the elimination of waste.

The liver also stores the sugar that the body utilizes as fuel, which aids in controlling blood sugar and cholesterol levels. It creates proteins throughout the body, including those that aid in blood clotting, and aid in the body’s defense against sickness and infections.

Alcohol’s Effects on the Liver

The liver is strong and capable of regenerating by creating new cells. Every time a person consumes alcohol, the liver filters the alcohol, liver cells degenerate, and new liver cells are produced. However, chronic heavy drinking might impair the liver’s capacity to repair itself and cause lasting damage. While a variety of chemicals can harm the liver, alcohol is one of the most frequently implicated ones.

How Drinking Alcohol Impacts Your Liver

More alcohol consumed than the liver can handle harms the liver and can result in liver disease. Alcohol contains the caloric substance ethanol. But unlike fat and carbohydrates, the body cannot store alcohol for later use. Alcohol-related diseases like the following are likely to occur with frequent alcohol abuse:

Fatty Liver

Fatty liver disease is the initial stage of liver disease brought on by alcohol. Fat accumulates in the liver as a result of alcohol-related fatty liver disease. It develops even after only a few days of heavy drinking. It happens when someone consumes a substantial amount of alcohol.

Fatty liver disease is a sign that a person is drinking too much alcohol, although it is not always apparent because it rarely manifests as a symptom. A moderate soreness in the upper right side of the abdomen brought on by an enlarged liver is one of the symptoms.

After two weeks of abstinence from alcohol, the liver should recover from fatty liver disease and return to normal. However, if you continue to drink too much when you have fatty liver disease, it could progress to other liver disease stages.

Alcoholic Hepatitis

After acquiring the fatty liver disease, drinking more can exacerbate liver damage and cause alcoholic hepatitis. Different from infectious hepatitis, alcoholic hepatitis results in inflammation of the liver. Alcoholic hepatitis causes the liver to swell and the liver cells to die, frequently leaving the liver with scars. Its severity varies, thus one person may experience a moderate case while another experiences a severe one

How much Alcohol Can a Person Consume Before Liver Damage Develops?

Due to its progressive progression, liver disease has no set timetable. After consuming a large amount of alcohol, fat can start to accumulate in the liver, and continuing use might cause more harm. When a person drinks 30 to 50 grams of alcohol per day for more than five years, alcohol-related liver damage can develop. 

The onset of liver disease and the onset of symptoms, however, can be influenced by a variety of circumstances. For example, a few months of severe drinking may cause one person to acquire a liver disease, but another may not until ten or twenty years later.

Are you looking for help?

Find a safe space near you so that you can freely and openly express your feelings and be guided throughout your rehabilitation journey by professionals and people who are going through the same thing. Contact R&R Recovery IOP Treatment in Huntington Beach for options, consultation, and more.

Discover your addiction treatment insurance coverage today!

    We Accept Most Major Insurance Providers

    • brand 6
    • brand 4
    • brand 3
    • brand 2
    • brand 1
    Skip to content