Binge drinking of alcohol is linked to brain damage in young people, new research finds.
Binge drinking is defined as the consumption of excessive amounts of alcohol in a short period of time in order to get drunk. In the US, it is defined as four or more standard alcoholic drinks for women or five or more for men in two hours.
Using alcohol in this way was linked to thinning in areas of the brain important for memory, language, awareness, consciousness and attention.
This research backs up recent studies that have also linked moderate alcohol intake in adults to brain damage.
Moderate intake is defined in the US as between 7 and 10 standard drinks per week.
The conclusions come from a review of studies on the link between alcohol and brain damage.
Along with thinner brains, binge drinkers also have worse memories, the studies found.
Speaking on the effect the excessive consumption of alcohol in a short period of time has on the brain, Dr Cservenka co-author of the study had this to say:
“We looked at six areas to determine the deleterious impact of heavy drinking on brain response, namely: response inhibition, working memory, verbal learning and memory, decision making and reward processing, alcohol cue reactivity, and socio-cognitive/socio-emotional processing.”
Dr Cservenka said:
“These brain alterations, as a result of heavy alcohol use during adolescence and young adulthood, could result in increased risk of developing an alcohol use disorder later on in life.”
From the conclusion of this study, It is therefore very important to continue raising awareness of the risks of excessive consumption of alcohol on our brain.