10 Damaging Effects That Children of Alcoholics May Endure

10 Damaging Effects That Children of Alcoholics May Endure

The impacts of addiction on children are complex and far reaching. During this crucial age, children need to feel safe and secure–they also require love, understanding and guidance. And because children are still developing, they also must rely on their guardians for material needs like food, water and shelter.

Creating such an environment fosters growth and empowers children preparing them for life’s challenges. A parent who grappling with alcoholism, on the other hand may be neglectful, abusive or dangerous.

Alcoholism is also a progressive disease that gets worse over time, and even if things are okay for now there is no such thing as a functional alcoholic.

If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol addiction it is important to consider the impact that drinking could be having on your kids. While alcohol addiction can be a hard habit to kick, getting treatment as early as possible is the best way to minimize harm for the whole family

Read on to learn the 10 potential consequences children can face as a result of parental alcoholism.

Developmentally – In the Womb

Alcoholism can impact a child before they are even born, in utero. Alcohol enters the bloodstream, easily passing to the uterus where it is absorbed more slowly. In its vulnerable state, a fetus can endure permanent developmental changes to the body and brain.

Also Read: How to deal with depression and anxiety

1. Physical Development

  • Facial deformities such as cleft lip or palate: a gap (or gaps) that form on the upper lip or roof of the mouth.1
  • Premature birth and low birthweight
  • Hearing and vision loss
  • Small head size
  • Stunted height

2. Stunted Brain Development

The scanned brains of children with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) reveal smaller brains as well as malformation in several areas of the brain. Other research found that prenatal poor communication between several parts of the brain.2 Together, the developmental issues associated with prenatal alcohol results in cognitive issues that can persist into adulthood.

3. Problems With Learning and Attention3

  • Memory problems
  • Issues with motor control and coordination
  • Speech impediments and problems with language development
  • Trouble paying attention
  • Poor critical thinking skills

4. Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS)

Drugs including alcohol, opioids, amphetamine, cocaine and can lead to what is called neonatal abstinence syndrome or NAS: a condition where a baby is born dependent to the drug that the mother was taking.4

NAS can cause a variety of withdrawal symptoms many of which may complicate the pregnancy putting the baby’s health and life at risk.

Disruption of Childhood Development

5. Neglect

In cases where child maltreatment has occurred, 40% involve alcohol and drug use. This amounts to around 480,000 kids annually.5

Child neglect is the failure of a parent or guardian to secure a child’s fundamental needs including:

  • Physical Neglect: This includes securing material needs like clothing, food, shelter, or keeping them safe from harm.6
  • Educational Neglect: Not enrolling their children in school or pulling them out too often are examples of emotional neglect.6
  • Emotional Neglect: Ignoring, humiliating, or berating, intimidating the child or separating them from others.6
  • Medical neglect: Not providing proper medical care for a child or refusing recommended and necessary care from a doctor.6

6. Physical Abuse 

Psychical child abuse is the second most reported form of child abuse next to neglect; it includes any physical injury intended to cause harm.

Common forms of child abuse include:

  • Hitting or beating (either with bare hands, or an object like a belt or a stick)
  • Using objects like a stove or a lighter to burn the skin
  • Kicking
  • Suffocation by strangulation of holding a child underwater (even temporarily)
  • Restraining using rope or tape.7

Alcoholism is believed to contribute to child abuse for several reasons:

  • Heavily alcohol use can impair areas of the brain responsible for self-control, giving rise to violent behavior against children.8
  • Heavy alcohol abuse causes the abuser to miss social cues and mistakenly assume that family members are treating them with hostility or disrespect; it may also cause them to misjudge the severity of their actions.9
  • Child abusers who are alcoholics are more likely to perpetrate violence if they can place the blame on alcohol instead of holding themselves accountable.9

7. Sexual Abuse

Among both boys and girls, alcohol was found to be a risk factor in child sexual abuse or CSA; it was also found to be more common in families where alcoholism is or had been present.9 For women, alcoholism is also a risk factor for developing alcohol and substance abuse problems later in life.10

8. Emotional Abuse

In many cases, the impact of emotional or verbal abuse are just as damaging as physical abuse. And like physical abuse can be exacerbated by alcohol misuse. Situations involving emotional abuse may include:

  • Verbal bullying
  • Yelling or screaming
  • Putting down for the child making mistakes
  • Isolating the child from friends or family
  • Ignoring or refusing to speak to the child
  • Gaslighting ­– invalidating an individual’s perception of reality; especially when it means denying the existence of physical or emotional abuse.

Alcoholism and child abuse can also occur in the other direction. In other words, children experiencing emotional and physical abuse are at risk of developing alcohol or substance abuse problems as adults.

9. Trauma and PTSD

The exposure of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse at the hands of a guardian or another adult are traumatic experiences. Trauma is also associated with the development of other mental illnesses like anxiety disorders, depression, PTSD, Borderline Personality disorder and substance abuse disorder.12

10. Substance Misuse and Addiction

Trauma leaves lasting scars which if left unaddressed can follow a child into adolescence and adulthood. Without the skills to cope, it is likely that they will develop other methods, one of which is self-medicating using alcohol or other drugs.

Having substance abuse issues is also more common amongst those with at least one other mental illness; over 18% of those who struggle with mental illness also have a substance use disorder.13 Having a co-occurring disorder can also complicate the recovery process often requiring more intensive and engaging forms of substance abuse treatment.

Brief about Post-child abuse14

  • 14% of children (1 in 7) experience neglect or abuse every year in the US.
  • 33% of children (1 in 3) who enter the foster care do so as a result of parental drug and alcohol abuse.
  • Child abuse is often thought of as just being intentional physical and emotional harm such as striking or bullying but it also includes neglect. Parents who fail to provide necessities like food, water, shelter, education, or medical care are also committing child abuse.
  • Child abuse is traumatic; children who experience it may develop feelings of guilt or shame, reoccurring memories and maladaptive thinking. Without proper mental health services, they can go on to develop mental illnesses including substance abuse.

Treatment Options for Drug & Alcohol Abuse at All American Detox

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Are you finally ready to quit drugs and alcohol once and for all? All American Detox is a drug and alcohol treatment and rehab center in Los Angeles California. Our detox and residential inpatient programs can help you overcome substance abuse in comfort and with confidence. For more information, call us today at (844) 570-1301.


NHS. (n.d.). Overview -Cleft lip and palate. NHS choices. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cleft-lip-and-palate/

Gadye, L. (n.d.). What is fetal alcohol syndrome, and how does it affect the brain? BrainFacts.org. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.brainfacts.org/diseases-and-disorders/childhood-disorders/2018/what-is-fetal-alcohol-syndrome,-and-how-does-it-affect-the-brain-082318

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, December 14). Alcohol use during pregnancy. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/fasd/alcohol-use.html

Default – Stanford Medicine Children’s health. Stanford Medicine Children’s Health – Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. (n.d.). Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=neonatal-abstinence-syndrome-90-P02387

The relationship between parental alcohol and other drug problems and … (n.d.). Retrieved October 5, 2022, from http://preventchildabuse.org/images/docs/therelationshipbetweenparentalalcoholandotherdrugproblemsandchildmaltreatment.pdf

Neglect. NSPCC. (n.d.). Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.nspcc.org.uk/what-is-child-abuse/types-of-abuse/neglect/

U.S. National Library of Medicine. (n.d.). Child physical abuse: Medlineplus medical encyclopedia. MedlinePlus. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/001552.htm

Gouvernement du Canada. (2012, July 26). WHO Facts on Alcohol and Violence: Child maltreatment and alcohol. Canada.ca. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/health-promotion/stop-family-violence/prevention-resource-centre/children/who-facts-on-alcohol-violence-child-maltreatment-alcohol.html

Widom, C. S., & Hiller-Sturmhöfel, S. (n.d.). Alcohol abuse as a risk factor for and consequence of child abuse. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/arh25-1/52-57.htm

Martie L. Skinner, Allison N. Kristman-Valente, Todd I. Herrenkohl, Adult Binge Drinking: Childhood Sexual Abuse, Gender and the Role of Adolescent Alcohol-Related Experiences, Alcohol and Alcoholism, Volume 51, Issue 2, 1 March 2016, Pages 136–141, https://doi.org/10.1093/alcalc/agv093

Trauma. Mental Health Foundation. (n.d.). Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/explore-mental-health/a-z-topics/trauma#:~:text=Trauma%20can%20make%20you%20more,difficulties%20in%20your%20daily%20life.

Russ, S. (2020, April 29). One in three children entered foster care in 2017 because of parental drug abuse. Child Trends. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://www.childtrends.org/blog/one-in-three-children-entered-foster-care-in-fy-2017-because-of-parental-drug-abuse

Top 10 Heroin Overdose Symptoms and Signs

Top 10 Heroin Overdose Symptoms and Signs

Heroin is a highly addictive mind-altering drug that is made from morphine. Morphine is a natural substance that comes from the seed pod of an opium poppy plant. Heroin is sold illegally on the streets in several forms. One form of heroin is a white or brown powdery substance that gets snorted or smoked, while the other form is referred to as ‘black tar heroin’ due to its impurities making it a sticky dark substance that is injected into your veins. There are a lot of heroin overdose symptoms and signs.

Using heroin in any form creates feelings of euphoria and it’s for this reason that heroin becomes addictive to users and leads to overdose. When using heroin frequently, your body creates tolerance and therefore you will want to use heavier amounts of the drug.

The more frequently heroin is used, the higher the risk of showing heroin overdose symptoms and other side effects of heroin use. These Heroin Overdose Symptoms and Signs can be fatal and may have lasting impacts on your cognition, mood, physical health, and more.

If you’re struggling with drug or alcohol addiction Contact All American Detox Center is one of the leading drug alcohol detox center to learn about drug detoxification.

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Heroin Overdose Signs and Symptoms

Heroin drug abuse and addiction have been on the rise, and so have heroin overdoses.

How do you know if you are addicted to heroin? Are there telltale signs and symptoms of heroin addiction that you should be aware of? Yes! Knowing the signs of addiction may be the first step in getting help. Addiction symptoms may lead to more detrimental overdose symptoms from heroin, and they will look different.

What does heroin addiction look like? If you are suffering from any of these below, it may be time to consider addiction treatment options.

  • Increasing need for more privacy to use
  • Quickly running out of money, or always borrowing money
  • Looking high or sedated to others
  • Nodding off from severe drowsiness
  • Withdrawing from family
  • Withdrawing from work or hobbies
  • Hiding your use from family, friends, etc.
  • Rapid weight loss that happens quickly
  • Visible skin problems from the use

Heroin takes over a person’s life completely due to its highly addictive properties. It’s important to recognize the addiction and seek heroin addiction treatment from the best drug rehab center before more harm occurs to the abuser than the ones around the abuser.

Heroin Drug Abuse

In 2019, more than 14,000 individuals died from a heroin overdose in the United States So, why do people use heroin?

In addition to heroin’s quick effects, there are also feelings of intense pleasure, full-body warmth, calm feelings, and overall heavy feeling of the body, and an increased feeling of confidence and overall happiness.

Heroin use has decreased over the last few years but is still widely used due to it being easier to obtain than prescription opioids, and it is much cheaper to get on the streets. In addition to it being easier to obtain, some people think that pure heroin is safer because it doesn’t have to be injected, consequently this is not the case. Heroin has taken the lives of more than 14 thousand individuals and will take more lives each year.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, heroin abusers are typically between the ages of 18 to 25 and in contrast, heroin use has declined in teens ages 12 to 17.

Signs of Heroin Overdose

 Some signs of continued long-term use may include needle marks or bruising around injection sites, visible skin infections, heart problems, kidney/liver disease, and collapsed or broken veins from injecting heroin into the body.

With prolonged use, there is a much higher chance of overdose. When someone uses too much heroin their breathing becomes much slower to the point where breathing completely stops. Heroin is considered an opioid and opioids are known to reduce breathing and slow the central nervous system.

Heroin and other opioids may have similar-looking drug overdose symptoms. Many drug overdose symptoms and signs include a lowered respiratory system and risk for seizures and heart problems.

Some individuals are at higher risk for overdose such as:

  • People who have reduced their tolerance or have been through detox treatment
  • People who inject heroin rather than smoke or snort it
  • People who take large quantities of other opioids
  • People suffering from liver conditions such as hepatitis C, or HIV
  • People who suffer from depression
  • People who use heroin with a combination of other drugs

According to American Addiction Centers, most heroin users are single,

although many of the overdoses that occur, happen in front of someone else Knowing

the signs of a heroin overdose can potentially save a life. If you see someone showing

heroin overdose symptoms and signs, immediately call 911 for help and assistance.

Symptoms of Heroin Overdose

Heroin is a powerfully addictive drug that can cause frequent mood swings, medical problems, and even possible brain damage due to slowed breathing. Heroin abuse also has shown deterioration of white matter in the brain which is what regulates your decision-making and behaviors.

When you are using heroin chronically, your body creates a tolerance to the drug which will make you want to use higher doses to acquire the same effects. When the drug wears off, withdrawal starts up and these symptoms include restlessness, muscle and bone pain, insomnia, vomiting, and cold flashes.

According to American Addiction Centers, symptoms of heroin use vary depending on how much is used as well as how often it is used.

Immediate Symptoms

– Nausea
– Vomiting
– Itching
– Dry Mouth

Delayed Symptoms

– Feeling sleepy for hours
– Foggy mental state
– Slow breathing
– Slow heart rate
– Nodding off

If you use more than your normal amount or maybe use more frequently overdose will most likely occur. Furthermore, heroin overdose symptoms look like:

– Shallow breathing
– Gasping for air
– Very pale skin
– Blue tint to lips and nails
– Discolored tongue
– Pinpoint pupils
– Weak pulse

– Lowered blood pressure
– Changes in mental state
– Constipation
– Seizures/ spasms
– Nausea/ vomiting
– Coma
– Inability to stay awake

Top 10 Heroin Overdose Symptoms and Signs

Heroin Overdose Treatment

Heroin addiction is a chronic disease, and like many chronic disorders, it can be treated. Recognizing your addiction is the first step, and it may be followed with an intervention or simply by entering a treatment facility. Heroin drug addiction treatment includes medical detox and inpatient services.

The goal of treatment is to not only get you sober but to restructure the brain and teach you healthy coping skills you get through the stressors of daily life.

What happens when you detox?

Your body will go through heroin use withdrawal and during this withdrawal, you will be under round-the-clock medical supervision while also being given medications like methadone to treat these symptoms. Drug detox centers are designed with you in mind and are equipped with the tools and skills to help you start treatment.

After you detox and no longer have heroin in your body, it will be time to start behavioral and cognitive therapy at an appropriate drug rehab center best fit for your needs where you can live at the site and join 12 step meetings as well as support group therapy.

Get Help Now at All American Detox

If you have suffered from any of the above information on heroin addiction, it may be seriously time to get yourself or your loved one help. Chronic diseases like addiction, even heroin addiction, can be treated.

All American Detox Center – A residential inpatient drug rehab center can provide you with personalized luxury detox services and medically trained staff who are ready to help you on your road to recovery.

Not only do they provide detox services, but at their center, they also provide inpatient rehabilitation. They only take about 6 patients at a time as a way to stay dedicated to your personal needs and really focus on you and your treatment plan.

You can contact All American Detox today by visiting their website here at Alcohol & Drug Rehab Center Los Angeles CA. They are currently adhering to all Covid-19 safety restrictions and are also currently accepting new clients. Call them today at (844) 570-1301 for more assistance.