alcohol abuse and premature aging

How Alcohol Abuse and Premature Aging Share the Same Path

Do you know the effects of alcohol abuse?

There are probably some that spring to mind, like liver problems, memory loss, and behavior changes. Long-term alcohol abuse definitely doesn’t leave you untouched.

But, did you know that too much alcohol can also cause you to age quicker? It’s one of the side-effects that not many people know of and it’s often misunderstood, so we’re here to clear everything up.

Take a look at our guide to alcohol abuse and premature aging. 

Alcohol Abuse and Premature Aging

It’s not too surprising that having a few beers several times a week isn’t very healthy, or even that it’s going to age you, but it is surprising how much it can age you. 

For example, one study of people who drank excessively found that they were 33% more likely to have age-related gray rings around their corneas. This is a condition known as arcus senilis, which usually only occurs in people over 60! That’s just one of the ways alcohol can cause your body to exhibit early signs of aging, but why does this happen?

There are a number of reasons. For examples, alcohol is hepatotoxic, which means it causes damage to the cells in your liver. These cells hold the role of detoxifying your body, and the more damaged they are the less they work, which leads to premature aging. It can also cause damage to the organs, including the skin (which is an organ!) and affect your body on a cellular level.


All of these things can lead to not only visual aging, but also age-related diseases. Let’s find out more about what can happen to your body. 

Aging Effects of Alcohol Abuse

When you drink, you’re probably not thinking of what it’s doing to your body. But, you should be! Take a look at these premature aging symptoms of alcohol on the body and understand some of the risks of abusing alcohol.

Effects on the Skin

Alcohol abuse symptoms are obvious on the skin. When drinking, your body becomes depleted of essential vitamins, like vitamin A which is essential for healthy skin. A reduction in vitamin A can reduce your skin’s collagen production, leading to a loss of elasticity and an increase in premature wrinkles. 

It also dehydrates you, which can lead to wrinkles and dry skin. Other symptoms include:

  • Spider veins
  • Yellow skin
  • Worsening of current skin conditions
  • Rashes
  • Skin color changes
  • Permanent redness

The redness, flushing, and color changes are caused by blood vessels on the skin dilating. When you drink too frequently, these vessels eventually dilate until they burst, appearing as red and purple veins on the surface of the skin. Other problems are largely caused by dehydration and the effects of alcohol on your cells.

All of these things can cause premature aging of hands, the face, and everything else!

Effects of Weight

Alcohol is full of empty calories, sugar, and carbohydrates, all of which can lead to weight gain. It can also increase your insulin levels, which causes your body to store more fat around your stomach and face. This leads to a bigger waist and jowls, both of which can age you. 

It can also wreak havoc on your hormones. Men who drink excessively can develop breasts and start carrying weight in their thighs and hips, as women tend to.

Other Effects

The longer someone abuses alcohol, or any negative substance, the more negative effects they’re likely to have. Some other aging effects of alcohol include:

  • Increases the number of free radicals in the body which can cause aging and other negative effects
  • Harming your organs
  • Aging the brain and reducing its function
  • Disrupting sleep which can reduce cognitive function and affect your appearance

Altogether, you can expect long-term alcohol use to significantly speed up your aging, both on the outside and inside. 

Getting Help With Alcohol Addiction

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, the body is going to age a lot faster than it should. Organs won’t function as well, the immune system will be weakened, and overall wellness is drastically reduced. The effects listed above are just scratching the surface of alcohol abuse symptoms, and without help, it can be fatal.

Luckily, there is a lot of help out there. With a good support system and a team of professionals, anyone can beat alcohol addiction – anyone!

The first step is finding a rehab center that can provide the professional help needed. Here are some tips to find one for you or someone you know:

  • Ask in social media groups (there are plenty for recovering alcoholics)
  • Look for local rehabs on Google
  • Check out online reviews to see if there are any you should avoid and know more about what’s on offer at different centers
  • Know what treatments you’re looking for
  • If you don’t know which treatments will work for you or your loved one, look for a rehab with a wide range of programs
  • Check out photos and videos of the facility

Once you’ve found a place that you like the look of and is covered by your insurance, make sure to get in touch with them. You can find out more about their approach, the team you’ll be working with, and get a better feeling about whether it’s the right option.

Get Help at Sober Partners

Sober Partners is a trusted rehab with facilities in Orange County, Newport Beach, and Huntington Beach. We have welcoming, modern facilities and a comprehensive inpatient treatment program to help people battle their addictions. Our team are professional, empathetic, and experienced, making sure you or your loved one get the treatment you need.

To find out more, be sure to get in touch with our team today.

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