Another major topic that the sociology of aging covers is the topic of substance abuse. Abusing drugs such as alcohol, nicotine, and tobacco can cause a lot of complications on a person’s overall health and lifestyle especially while aging. Not only do complications occur, but one can also possibly overdose from drinking too much alcohol. Nicotine and tobacco is also known to cause lung cancer. According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking too much even once in a single session is known to cause major health problems, which in turn can possibly cause more health problems in the future. Alcohol affects the body’s brain by interfering with communication pathways, and it can also affect the brain’s overall appearance and functioning. Alcohol can also cause problems when it comes to bodily behavior such as motor movements and thinking abilities.
According to the same source, alcohol can also affect the body’s heart functioning as well. Drinking too much alcohol can cause cardiomyopathy, which is the stretching and drooping of the heart muscle. It also can cause irregular heart beat rhythms, stroke, and high blood pressure. However, research also shows that drinking a moderate amount of alcohol can prevent heart disease in healthy adults. Not only does alcohol cause complications for the body’s heart and brain, but it also affects the liver, pancreas, and can cause cancer. Drinking extremely high amounts of alcohol can possibly develop cancer of the mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, and breast over time. The liver is one of the organs in the body that is majorly affected by binge drinking alcohol, and complications such as fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, and cirrhosis. Finally, alcohol causes several toxic substances to build up that leads to inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels, and can also cause improper digestion.
Tobacco and nicotine use is another extremely common form of substance abuse among American citizens, and it is also known to cause extreme complications on the body’s overall health. It is currently known as the leading cause of disease, even though it is preventable. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are approximately 443,000 premature deaths that occur as a result of tobacco and nicotine smoking of pregnant women. There are about one in every five Americans that die from smoking. About 8.6 million deaths also occur from serious diseases that result from smoking as well. Smoking is so dangerous that even secondhand smoke is known to cause some complications for some people. There are almost 50 thousand nonsmokers that die from diseases that are caused by secondhand smoke.
Tobacco and nicotine use are both known to cause several different types of cancers such as: lung cancer, and oral cancer that can lead to death and cause complications for people as they age if they do not seek treatment. Smoking also causes various diseases...