Brain fog: Multiple sclerosis and other causes

Alcohol wipes out the deep sleep we need to feel refreshed, which can leave you feeling tired during the day. This is due to dead neurons that alcohol kills in the process of methanol poisoning. Alcohol also steals your sleep by triggering snoring, disrupting REM sleep patterns, or keeping you from falling into a sound slumber.

alcohol brain fog

Fortunately, there are many things that you can do to reduce the symptoms of brain fog and improve your mental clarity and focus. Understanding the side effects of alcohol abuse is crucial for anyone looking to get treatment or quit drinking altogether. Alcohol abuse effects are wide-ranging and can cause both short-term and long-term problems. You can ask your doctor about using certain medications to treat alcohol-related brain fog.

Dopamine’s Dual Effect: Neurotransmitter and Hormone

While you will have been working through the issues that affect your addiction during the brain fog, you will get a renewed chance to focus even more on getting better. Basically, dopamine is what teaches your brain that alcohol equals reward, making you naturally want more alcohol. Especially if you’re feeling low and have learned that alcohol can numb or remove that pain, even if temporary, you’re more likely to go for it. The brain gets focused on the reward and stops caring about the drawbacks. Read on to find out how exactly alcohol changes your dopamine levels, and what you can do to focus on healthier rewards and ultimately become more mindful of your drinking. At Evolve Indy, we strive to see our patients succeed in their journey to recovery from alcohol abuse and addiction.

What happens after 6 months of no alcohol?

6 Months – Improved Focus

At this stage, you've continued to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. This is the point where some more intangible benefits start to appear. Some people find that their self-esteem improves and ability to be self-compassionate also increases (Collison et al., 2016).

They may not be able to form short-term memories because they are confused or thinking about other things. There is no set of symptoms that all people with brain fog experience. They may find conversations hard to follow, or they may not be able to pay attention to presentations.

Things that Helped me Reach 60 Days of No Alcohol

Before we dive into alcohol’s impact, it’s important to remember that the amount you drink completely changes its overall effect on your brain health. But, there is some evidence showing that light and moderate drinking may have its upsides too. Basically, dopamine is involved in almost every area of your thought and reward system. So the healthier your brain is, the better it can use dopamine effectively and communicate messages between nerve cells and the rest of your body.

alcohol brain fog

Binge drinking also affects the cerebellum (which helps regulate balance) and the cerebral cortex (which is responsible for taking in and processing new information). When these regions of the brain are slowed down, a person might feel dizzy and stagger when walking, have blurred or double vision, and have difficulty paying attention to things going on around them. «Your sensory uptake has been dulled, so you’re alcohol brain fog not going to be taking in new information as well,» said Pagano. Even low levels of alcohol can cause a surge of dopamine in the brain, making you feel wonderful – until it drops off as the alcohol digests and you feel worse. But dopamine-containing neurons are activated by motivational stimuli, and drinking can easily become that stimulus. Overall, alcohol can make it harder to understand, reason, and learn.