10 Ways Life Gets Better After You Stop Drinking

by | Last updated Oct 24, 2022 | Published on Oct 24, 2022 | Alcohol Addiction | 0 comments

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When dealing with alcohol addiction, cutting out alcohol can be intimidating. Many believe life without alcohol will be dull. However, the health benefits of quitting alcohol alone are more than enough to consider long-term sobriety. Here are some of the many ways life improves when you stop drinking. 

1. Sleep Gets Better

Long-term alcohol abuse often leads to chronic sleep disturbances: a sustained difficulty falling asleep and waking up well-rested. Poor sleep increases the risk of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, depression, heart attack, and stroke. Staying sober will help you normalize your brain functions and get improved and consistent sleep.

2. Better Mental Health

Roughly 50% of people who suffer from alcohol use disorder also experience mental illness. Data by the CDC indicates that men who drank eight or more drinks and women who drank five or more drinks in two hours had reduced mental health markers. Getting sober can help diminish the side effects of alcohol consumption on your mental health. Over time, you’re more likely to experience less anxiety, depression, and stress. 

3. Improved Immunity

Drinking impairs immunity, making you more vulnerable to severe infections. For example, alcohol damages the white blood cells and tiny hair-like structures (cilia) that clear pathogens out of the airways in the lungs, leading to pathogen buildups. Additionally, excessive alcohol consumption can cause inflammation in the gut and eliminate the healthy microorganisms that live in the intestine, which play an essential role in overall health.

When you’re under the influence, your immune system is low. This is why when you’re recovering from a hangover, you’re more likely to feel sick or get a cold. Long-term sobriety can help you recover your immune system’s strength and bring your vitamins and minerals up to sustain a healthy body.

4. Lower Risk of Disease

Heavy drinkers can have as much as 10-15 times higher risk of developing certain cancers. Alcohol abuse and chronic drinking are linked to various diseases, such as 

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Liver disease
  • Digestive problems
  • Breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, voice box, liver, colon, and rectum cancer

Reducing your alcohol intake can help significantly reduce your risk of disease. 

5. Better Cognitive Health

Addiction changes how your brain works, deteriorating its normal functions. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism indicates that most alcoholics exhibit mild-to-moderate deficiencies in intellectual functioning, along with smaller brain size and regional changes in brain-cell activity. The most prevalent alcohol-associated brain impairments affect visuospatial abilities (ability to identify visual and spatial relationships between objects) and higher cognitive functioning.

While some brain damage might be irreversible, quitting alcohol can support your cognitive health and improve any side effects of chronic drinking.

6. Improved Relationships

Many people isolate themselves when dealing with substance abuse. Or their addiction causes so many issues with the people around them that their relationships deteriorate, sometimes permanently. 

Staying sober will improve your mental and physical health, providing a better foundation to connect with people, whether they are friends, family, or romantic partners.

7. Better Financial Health

Keeping up with alcohol addiction is expensive. Being under the influence increases the risk of mismanaging money through poor decision-making influenced by intoxication. Quitting alcohol can help you maintain a stable job, and build better spending habits, helping you achieve financial stability. 

8. Improved Self-Esteem

Alcohol abuse is often related to self-esteem issues. While people struggle with self-esteem for various reasons, alcohol can reinforce these issues and make them worse. Staying sober will eliminate this volatile influence on your life.

9. Better Romantic Intimacy

Staying sober saves you from suffering various intimate issues.

In women, alcoholism causes multiple sexual dysfunctions, the most common of which are dyspareunia (painful sexual intercourse), higher rates of genital-urinary health problems, and low vaginal lubrication.

In men, it can cause erectile dysfunction, make it harder to climax, and diminish sex drive (low libido).

10. Improved Overall Well-Being

Under the influence, you are unable to live life to the fullest. It deteriorates your relationships, worsens your health, and may lead to premature death, and you are constantly dealing with its effects on your body and mind.

Getting sober means all the pressure alcohol puts on all aspects of your life is diminished or eliminated, leading to a state of mental and physical wellness that will improve every part of your life.

The benefits of being sober are unmeasurable

Anyone that has won their battle against alcohol addiction can attest that the benefits of sobriety are unmeasurable. When you stop drinking, everything from your physical, mental, and emotional well-being improves, along with every other aspect of your life. 

If you or someone you know is dealing with addiction, consider seeking help today. Addiction recovery is possible. Contact a rehab facility today and speak with a counselor to understand your treatment options and begin your sobriety journey. 

Written by: Amethyst Editorial Team

Written by: Amethyst Editorial Team

The Amethyst Recovery Center Editorial team is comprised of individuals who are passionate about addiction recovery. We hope to contribute to the recovery journey through personal stories, insights, and informational content pieces.

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