The Link Between Alcoholism and Neuropathy

Alcoholism can lead to a host of problems affecting your physical and mental health. It can also negatively impact your personal and professional lives, damaging relationships with those around you. 

What you may not know is that alcoholism can lead to a chronic and permanent nerve condition known as neuropathy.

At Advantage Spinal Dynamics & Innovative Medicine in Meridian, Idaho, we offer a number of treatment options for people suffering from neuropathy, including cases in which alcohol is a contributing factor.

Alcoholism and your health 

The short-term effects of alcohol make it appealing as a recreational substance, and many people have engaged in excessive drinking at some point in their lives. People drink to celebrate, grieve, or let loose after a long week. 

Everyone’s experiences with alcohol differ, depending on their tolerance, mental state, and even genetics. However, one thing is certain: Frequent, long-term use of alcohol is detrimental to nearly every aspect of your health.

Over time, alcoholism can lead to a number of health complications, including: 

Alcoholic neuropathy is particularly likely in people who’ve been heavy drinkers for many years. 

The link between alcohol and neuropathy

Heavy alcohol use has a detrimental effect on myelin, the protective sheath around your nerves that helps them pass impulses to the brain. As your nerves are slowly demyelinated, you begin to experience symptoms of neuropathy.

Alcoholic neuropathy can manifest in many ways, depending on which nerves are affected. Peripheral nerve damage often begins in the arms and legs before moving on to affect your digestion, urination, sexual function, and even speech. 


Common symptoms of alcoholic neuropathy include: 



All of these symptoms lower your quality of life, and they only worsen until you stop drinking. The good news is that once you give up alcohol, your overall health and well-being improve, lowering your risk of further complications. 


Nerve damage caused by alcoholism can’t be reversed, but a specialist like those at Advantage Spinal Dynamics can help manage and alleviate your symptoms. 

To learn more about neuropathy, schedule a consultation by calling our office or requesting an appointment online today.

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