Many of us know someone whose personality completely changes when they drink. Alcohol has an unpredictable effect on our mood. Usually, we feel better shortly after we begin drinking. But alcohol has a disinhibiting effect which can reveal or amplify our underlying feelings, which can be particularly troublesome when we’re already going through a tough time. This is one of the reasons that many people become upset, angry or aggressive when drinking.
What happens when we drink?
Alcohol is a depressant and if we drink too much our mood drops in the days afterwards. A lot of the natural “happy chemicals” have been squeezed out of our brains by the alcohol while drinking, giving that short-term buoyant mood. When these chemicals are depleted in the days afterwards, our mood can be a bit depressed.
This is particularly true if we have a hangover from heavy drinking, which has a very clear impact on our mental health, as well as our physical health. This is why physical symptoms like nausea and headaches can be accompanied by feeling very low and anxious, what a lot of people commonly refer to as “the fear”. This low mood can last for some time and can be difficult to deal with.
A lot of the natural “happy chemicals” have been squeezed out of our brains by the alcohol while drinking, giving that short-term, buoyant mood.