Alcohol Causes More Deaths than Opioids

Source: Dr. Barbara Krantz, "Behind the Numbers: Alcohol is Killing More People Than the Opioid Epidemic. Why Aren't We Talking About It?", Caron, 28 May 2019.

"According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), over 77,000 people died of a drug overdose in 2017. Around 44,800 of those died from an opioid overdose, a nearly five-fold increase over the 8,000 people who overdosed in 1999. Yet, more people died from alcohol use in 2017. Alcohol caused approximately 88,000 deaths each year in the U.S. from the years 2006 to 2010."

"alcohol doesn’t attract consistent attention as a killer because it’s legal, easily available, and socially acceptable. In fact, it’s so deeply ingrained in our culture that not drinking in some circumstances can be perceived as out of the ordinary."

"Alcohol suppresses the bone marrow, wiping out the white cell count, red blood cell count and platelet count."

"Alcohol causes cardiomyopathy, essentially turning the heart muscle to mush. It decreases ejection fraction, increasing the likelihood of congestive heart failure. Cardiac arrhythmia, especially atrial fibrillation, is a common symptom, and one weekend of hard drinking is enough to cause it. It’s sometimes called holiday heart syndrome. Alcohol is also associated with high blood pressure and an increased risk of stroke, especially among women."

"Alcohol is associated with an increased risk of cancer, particularly esophageal, liver, mouth, throat, and colorectal cancer."

"Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant. Because of the euphoric feeling they get from alcohol, patients often don’t believe that drinking alcohol when they are anxious or depressed can further aggravate these issues."

"Alcohol consumption makes you more susceptible to infections."

Long ago Solomon wrote:

"Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaining? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? Those who linger long over wine, those who go to taste mixed wine. Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly; at the last it bites like a serpent And stings like a viper. Your eyes will see strange things and your mind will utter perverse things. And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea, or like one who lies down on the top of a mast. "They struck me, but I did not become ill; they beat me, but I did not know it. When shall I awake? I will seek another drink"" (Proverbs 23:29-35).

"Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler, and whoever is intoxicated by it is not wise" (Proverbs 20:1).

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