What Are the Physical Effects of Alcohol Abuse?

Some of the physical effects of alcohol abuse include changes in mood and behavior, heart damage, liver inflammation, pancreatitis, a higher risk of developing certain cancers and a weakened immune system, as stated by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Even a single occasion of over-imbibing can have a negative impact on the body.

Excessive alcohol consumption can cause portions of the brain to shrink, as stated by WebMD. This can result in memory loss, dementia and a decrease in an individual's long-term ability to reason and make sound decisions.

Alcohol abuse can alter the functioning of the sympathetic nervous system, causing blood vessels to function incorrectly. This results in high blood pressure and puts individuals at a higher risk of stroke and heart disease.