Addiction | 4 min read

EtOH: What It Is, Side Effects of Use, & How to Get Help If Addicted to EtOH

Medically Reviewed

Medically Reviewed By

Dr. Po-Chang Hsu

Dr. Po-Chang Hsu

On August 29, 2022

Written By

Amanda Stevens

Amanda Stevens, B.S.

On November 11, 2021

Hiding your drug use or lying about how much/frequency of use
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Are you or someone in your life abusing EtOH? You’ll want to familiarize yourself with this substance. EtOH is short for ethyl alcohol, a solvent often used in making other chemicals. While there are many ways to abuse EtOH, the most common method is mixing alcohol with spirits.

Like traditional alcohol, EtOH is a depressant. That means it can cause serious issues with reaction times and even cause comas and memory loss when enough is consumed. If EtOH combines with other depressants, the issues can quickly become life-threatening. On top of that, this substance is very addictive. Genetic conditions make it easier for addiction to start quicker in some people.

If you or a loved one abuses EtOH, you’ll want to talk with a doctor. However, you shouldn’t try to quit alone, as some withdrawal symptoms can be harmful. Instead, work with professionals to overcome the problems. As a component of alcohol, EtOH addictions are the same as alcohol abuse.

Detoxing and recovery are made easier with professionals on your side. You’ll stay in a facility where your symptoms and progression can be monitored, making it much easier to succeed. Please keep reading to learn about EtOH and how to get help.

What is EtOH?

EtOH is the medical word for ethanol, found in alcoholic drinks. Drinking the substance makes a person feel intoxicated. EtOH is the only safe form of alcohol that people can drink, although it’s also found in perfumes and medicines.

EtOH is a clear liquid and one of the most common types of alcohol in the United States. You’ll find this substance in beer, wine, spirits, and other alcoholic beverages. Currently, alcohol, and therefore EtOH, is the most popular drug in the country. Many people drink, with about 14.5 million people over 12-year-old having an Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD).

EtOH is found in the following drinks:

  • Wine: You can expect the alcohol content of wines in the U.S. to be between 9% and 14%. However, fortified wines contain much more.
  • Beer: Beer is another popular drink. It’s made from grains and usually has an alcohol content of about 3% to 6%.
  • Spirits: Spirits have a higher concentration of alcohol than most other beverages. Although, it can fall into a very wide range. It’s the second most popular alcoholic beverage after beer.

Overall, most people in America are familiar with Etoh, even if they don’t know the medical term for alcohol. The substance has many different side effects, which we’ll cover below.

EtOH Side-Effects

Ethanol has many intense effects on the body. The substance impacts the brain, which can cause problems with various body functions and overall health. Additionally, alcohol is known to impact the heart, liver, and other internal organs.

Drinking small amounts of EtOH causes the muscles to relax. It can also lead to hand-eye coordination problems, making driving very dangerous. Many people also have their decision-making skills impacted heavily by the substance.  However, it’s much more dangerous to drink it in larger amounts. It could easily cause alcohol poisoning or overdose in a person.

These are some other side effects that a person can experience. Remember, many people react differently to alcohol, so you may not see all the side effects. The following are the short-term side effects:

  • Intoxication
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Urination
  • Low blood sugar
  • Low blood pressure
  • Aggression or agitation

However, several long-term side effects stick around after abusing Etoh. These long-term effects include the following:

  • High blood pressure
  • Ulcers
  • Liver damage
  • Brain damage
  • Lowered levels of vitamins and minerals in the body
  • Increased risks of certain cancers

There are some signs to look out for which suggest that the alcohol harmed a person’s liver. The person will likely experience a very dry mouth, higher thirst levels, intense tiredness, jaundice, nausea, and abdominal pain. They must find professional help as soon as possible since this condition is not going away.

Withdrawal Symptoms From EtOH Use

After heavy drinking, it can be dangerous to quit suddenly. Many withdrawal symptoms are associated with EtOH, meaning you will want a professional to monitor your health as you recover. The symptoms can appear as soon as six hours after your last drink. This reason is usually why it’s so difficult to quit.

Here are some symptoms you can expect to see:

  • Shaking
  • Anxiety
  • Intense headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Intense sweating
  • Insomnia at night
  • Confusion
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Fever

However, if you are heavily addicted to the substance, you’ll experience more intense symptoms. About 12 to 48 hours after your last drink, you might hallucinate or experience seizures. That’s why it’s essential that you seek out professional help.

Two to three days after your last drink, you may experience delirium. These are intense hallucinations that also come with delusions. However, most people going through the withdrawal phase don’t have this symptom.

While it might seem like most of the symptoms you can deal with on your own, it’s very dangerous. Instead, make sure to get the help you deserve. You don’t want to quit cold turkey either- a team of experts will devise the perfect plan for you.

How to Get Help if Addicted to EtOH

You’ll want to reach out to experienced professionals to help with an EtOH addiction. We can help you find the relief you need and deserve if you’re struggling. Our professionals will help you every step of the way! Also, don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions that you might have. We’d love to answer them for you.

Overall, EtOH can be a very serious addiction. It doesn’t take long to become addicted, and the withdrawal symptoms can have serious side effects. As such, it is imperative that help for an addiction to this substance be treated immediately before any serious, even fatal, consequences occur.

If you or a loved one are seeking New York detox programs or alcohol rehabs, Ascendant is here to help. Reach out today to learn more about our programs.

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  1. Harvard Health Publishing. Alcohol abuse. Harvard Health. Published December 5, 2014. Accessed August 29, 2022.
  2. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Alcohol Facts and Statistics | National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). Accessed August 29, 2022.