I am constantly reading about how alcohol affects mostly the liver and secondly other organs and body functions as well as causing vitamin deficiencies, but I did not find much information about the brain.

Could you elaborate on how exactly alcohol consumption, either chronical or infrequently affect brain functions both in the middle and in the long term especially when drinking ultil getting drunk?

  • Can you give more specifics? Alcohol affects minors differently from adults.
    – Othya
    Commented Aug 11, 2016 at 18:35
  • Even though I was addressing alcohol consumption from a standard consumer (+15 years), the question can be permissive enough to allow for answers to cover all possible ages. Commented Aug 12, 2016 at 6:16

1 Answer 1


When drinking alcohol, the small water-soluble ethanol enters the bloodstream and moves around till it reaches the brain. Since it is a small molecule, it enters the blood-brain barrier and passes between brain cells (neurons) interfering with the neurotransmitters of the nervous system. Ethanol causes the release of Dopamine (Happiness Hormone) and stops Glutamate (a neurotransmitter that normally excites neurons) and this makes the brain slower and the person calmer and sleepy.

References and for more details: http://www.drinkingandyou.com/site/uk/xdrunk.htm http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/drugs-alcohol/how-alcohol-makes-drunk.htm

  • Welcome to Health SE! This post has the makings of a very good answer, but here on Health, we strongly encourage using references. They are the only way in which we can tell if information is reliable or not. If you are struggling to find good sources, check out, What are reliable sources? If you want to learn more about our site's stance on answers without references, check out, Should answers without references be immediately deleted? Thanks :)
    – michaelpri
    Commented Aug 13, 2016 at 18:56
  • 1
    I edited my answer and added the references I read. Thank you :) Commented Aug 13, 2016 at 19:20

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