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The Connection Between Alcohol and Dementia

As a parent, it is devastating to watch your child struggle with addiction.

Alcohol is a substance known for its relaxing effects and is usually consumed in social gatherings. Despite its popularity, alcohol can cause critical side effects. Not only is alcohol addiction a dangerous disease on its own, but its consequences can also bring on other forms of health concerns. In recent years, the connection between alcohol and dementia has been further researched.People who develop an addiction to alcohol can begin their recovery at our Christian rehabilitation center.

What is Alcohol Dementia?

Dementia itself is made up of a group of symptoms that can cause memory loss and negatively affect cognitive and social functioning. The term dementia acts as an umbrella that covers a variety of other diseases and medical conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia is a result of damage to brain cells, and this damage disrupts brain cells’ abilities to function properly.1 The connection between alcohol and dementia is believed to result from the harm alcohol can have on the brain.
Alcohol-related dementia is a form of dementia that results from the overconsumption of alcohol, or alcoholism. Like the other branches of dementia, it affects memory, cognitive function, language, and other mental functions. Syndromes like Korsakoff’s Syndrome and Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome often result from alcohol dementia. This form of dementia is thought to be caused by the toxicity of alcohol, as well as the nutritional complications it causes. To prevent the effects of alcoholism, those suffering from this disease can find sobriety with the help of our faith-based alcohol addiction treatment.

Signs of Alcohol Dementia

Alcohol dementia signs can include several symptoms that can vary in intensity depending on the amount of alcohol that the person consumes.

These symptoms may include:

  • Impaired cognitive abilities 
  • Inability to retain information
  • Memory loss
  • Difficulty with concentrating
  • Difficulty with thinking logically
  • Abnormal reflexes
  • Decrease in body temperature
  • Decrease in blood pressure
  • Muscle atrophy

Although language and gestures are unaffected, speaking and forming concise thoughts can be difficult as a result of dementia brought on by alcoholism. The overconsumption of alcohol can cause other symptoms and illnesses. Guidelines published in the National Institute for Health Care and Excellence advise people to stay away from alcohol to prevent diseases like dementia.2

At Faith in Recovery, we understand how tough it can be to recover from addiction on your own. It can be hard to admit you need help, but we’re here for you. You can take the first step to living a sober life in recovery programs like our Christian residential addiction program where recovery from substance abuse is made safe and possible.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, you don’t have to go through it alone. Do not hesitate to get help. Call us now 888-280-4763.


  1. ALZ- What is dementia?
  2. NICE- Dementia, disability and frailty in later life – mid-life approaches to delay or prevent onset