This patient support community is for loved ones of people who drink and are trying to quit for discussions relating to abuse, behavioral issues, caring for yourself, counseling, divorce and separation, enabling, guilt, and when to get medical help.
Can too much alcohol consumption cause a stroke? Both of my parents have suffered mild strokes (in both cases effecting one eye)
They both drink straight vodka daily. Probably a 16 oz glass filed with ice then vodka poured in.
Look at it this way. Too much stress on the body can lead to all kinds of ailments, including heart related. No exercise, proper eating, not drinking enough water - this all stresses the body. The human body wasn't designed to live off of alcohol. I wouldn't say directly alcohol causes strokes, but the lifestyle that comes with heavy drinking can surely contribute.
People who consume alcohol to intoxication often experience a hangover. Signs of increased sympathetic nervous system activity can accompany a hangover, including increased systolic blood pressure, rapid heartbeat (i.e., tachycardia), tremor, and sweating. For more information, see http://biology.about.com/library/weekly/aa010104a.htm
Alcohol can also interfere with the function of blood pressure medication. Elevated blood pressure is a primary risk factor in inducing stroke.
Yes. Continued consumption of large amounts of alcohol increases blood pressure, which is a primary risk factor for stroke.
My husband had 3 TIAs (mini-strokes) at age 40.
His bp before that was 180/120. His dr prescribed meds, and they only brought it down to 160/100-110.
He quit drinking finally after a violent incident (or told me he quit, actually was still sneaking it occassionally but at a much lower level) and his bp dropped to 110/60.
In the past few months he's started drinking increasingly heavily again and his bp was back up, still on meds, to 130/84 a month ago. Still not terrible, but rising as his alcohol intake increases. He doesn't see the correlation.
Unlike your parents, he is a binge drinker - huge volumes all at once, sometimes a 2-3 day binder in which he may consume 60-70 drinks. What your parents are doing is at a far lower level, but still more than what is considered safe. There could certainly be a correlation.
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