Which Muscles in Your Body Are Affected by Alcohol First?
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Alcohol affects your entire body in different ways. Sometimes, it can have an effect on certain parts of your body without you even realizing—effects that can threaten your health and your safety.
Alcohol affects the muscles within your eyes in the first few hours of drinking, which can result in blurred or double vision or dizziness, according to the University of Notre Dame. This is in addition to alcohol's direct effect on the central nervous system and how information is processed by the brain.
The muscles in your hands are also among the first muscles to be affected by alcohol, as seen with unsteadiness or shakiness, according to the University of Notre Dame.
Alcohol also greatly decreases your hand-eye coordination and motor skills, leading to an overall clumsiness and disjointedness that can affect the way that you are able to complete certain simple, everyday tasks, such as picking something up or tying your shoes.
Legs and Heart
Your legs are one of the most noticeable parts of your body that are immediately affected by consumption of alcohol. Alcohol causes the muscles in your legs to weaken significantly, leading to a loss of balance and coordination and causing you to stumble and have great difficulty walking in a straight line, according to the University of Notre Dame.
The loss of muscle control in your legs when you drink is one of the most easily noticeable effects of alcohol on the muscles in your body. However, there are many other muscles in your body affected by alcohol that are not as noticeable. This includes the heart muscles, and according to the University of Notre Dame, prolonged excessive drinking can severely damage them, sometimes causing arrhythmia. Also, the weakening and dehydration of your muscles from consuming alcohol is also the main cause of soreness and stiffness experienced during hangovers, according to Dr. Michaele P. Dunlap of University of Oregon.
Robert Moreschi has been writing since 2008. His work appears on Web sites such as Gear Up For Sports, where he covers the New York Giants and the New York Mets. Moreschi has a Bachelor of Science in journalism and media studies from Rutgers University.