Alcoholism and Executive Functions

What is an executive function? It is a set of mental processes which is used to perform such actions as planning, organizing, strategizing, focus, attention to detail, and time management. This function is located within the frontal lobe, a major part of the brain. People who happened to be predisposed to alcohol abuse tend to have problems with the executive function of the brain, so adding alcohol into the mixture is recipe for disaster.

When you add the ingredient of heavy drinking to a body’s chemistry it begins to increase impulsive actions and damages the frontal lobe further effecting abilities that are generally referred as the executive functions. Which allows you to understand your actions and yourself; these functions are compromised during ones early sobriety.
The damage effects judgment, problem solving, decision making, planning, social conduct, possibly attention span, perception, memory, and langue. This brings us around to where the frontal lobe is located and why is it important?

Your frontal lobe is the part of your brain located right behind your forehead and represents a third of your brain, which becomes fully developed around the ages of 20-25. This lobe is comprised of the majority of the dopamine associated neurons located in the cerebral cortex. Dopamine helps to regulate emotion and movement. Early abuse of alcohol and drugs can be a greater danger to the frontal lobe because the effect it may have on its development. This is why it is possible for an addict or alcoholic in early sobriety to be showing unstable behavior when it comes to exhibiting functions that normally operates from the frontal lobe. So is there anything that can be done to improve the health of your frontal lobe? There are small exercises that can be put into your routine according to Dr.Sandra Bond Champman there are little things that can be implemented into your daily routine. First off try to refrain from deep intense thinking instead attempt to keep your brain actively interested and feel challenged. Second do not overload your brain and keep focus on the task at hand. Don’t be so concerned with memory too many details taken into the frontal lobe hinders it from being highly efficient. An According to Dr.Johnson, Glen list keeping, menu planning, and physical exercise can also instrumental into putting forth effort to improve the brains health. Your frontal lobe has a lot to do with your normal everyday function so it’s important to take care of it.

In conclusion executive functions are transmitted from your frontal lobe which take up a third of your brain, doesn’t fully develop until somewhere between the ages of 20-25, and alcohol abuse further damages this area of your brain. In early sobriety one can have trouble with the functions commonly referred as the executive functions. An there are something’s that can be done to help improve the health of your brain. This article has been a brief glimpse at how big of a part the frontal lobe of our brains plays in everyday life and the what alcohol can do to it.

Sources – Dice image

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