When people can think about the damage that drinking can cause, they usually think about the liver, and rightly so. On the other hand, alcohol addiction is a serious mental health issue that impacts the brain. Specifically, alcohol dementia is a colloquial term used to describe a serious medical condition called Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Everyone needs to understand what this condition is, how it shows up in people who have a drinking problem, and the treatment problems. As always, nobody has to go through this serious situation alone. There are always trained professionals like those at Oceanfront Recovery who are willing to lend a helping hand.
What Is the Cause of Alcohol Dementia?
Even though alcohol itself is not the cause of this specific disorder, the order does stem from nutrient deficiencies that tend to develop in people with alcohol addiction. This serious mental health issue can deprive the body of other nutrients it needs to operate its bodily processes. For example, individuals who fill up on alcohol can develop a wide variety of nutrient deficiencies, including:
- A deficiency of vitamin B1
- A deficiency of protein
- A deficiency of vitamin C
- A deficiency of minerals, such as calcium and iron
When it comes to alcohol dementia, this condition is caused by a specific deficiency of vitamin B1. Also called thiamine, this vitamin is essential for the cells of the brain. People who lack this vitamin are prone to developing serious symptoms, including nerve damage.
What Are the Symptoms of Alcohol Dementia?
Like other disorders, the symptoms of alcohol dementia will vary in range and severity depending on how long the symptom has been present and how severe the drinking problem is. Some of the most common signs of this syndrome include:
- People with this condition will develop abnormal eye movements, usually referred to as nystagmus.
- There will also be problems with the person’s reflexes, which occur when the doctor strikes a tendon with the reflex hammer.
- Individuals with this condition may also develop an abnormally low blood pressure along with a low body temperature.
- The heart rate is going to be increased, called tachycardia.
- The muscles of the body are going to start to atrophy, leading to severe weakness.
- Some individuals may also have issues walking.
If this condition is not treated quickly, some of the symptoms may end up becoming permanent. Therefore, it is critical to make sure that this condition is treated as quickly as possible.
What Is the Treatment of Alcohol Dementia?
When someone has been diagnosed with this condition, it is important to treat it as quickly as possible. The treatment is to replace the missing thiamine rapidly. Even though many of the symptoms are reversible, some people with this condition will also develop memory loss. If memory loss is present, then it is often permanent. Therefore, it is critical to make sure that individuals who drink regularly see a doctor as quickly as possible. Furthermore, there are also trained professionals who are available to help people stop drinking.
Contact Oceanfront Recovery Today for Help with Alcohol Dementia
Alcohol addiction is a serious mental health issue that needs to be treated by trained experts. That is where we can help you. At Oceanfront Recovery, we specialize in helping people who suffer from alcoholism, including alcohol dementia. We provide alcohol detox to help individuals begin their addiction treatment. If you would like to learn more about this serious condition, please reach out to us today. We have trained professionals who are willing to lend a helping hand to those in need, so please contact us at 877.279.1777. Please remember that you do not have to go through this difficult process alone.