Alcohol is a mood-changing drug and both a depressant in larger doses, and a stimulant in smaller quantities.
Alcohol can lower your inhibitions (make you do things you wouldn’t usually do) and could make you feel affectionate, horny, sexually confident, sexually assertive, or keen to experiment sexually. The numbing effect of alcohol can make it harder to climax (cum), and heavy drinkers can lose both their sex drive (wanting to have sex) and their ability to get an erection (hard-on).
Alcohol affects your judgement which can make you more likely to take risks during sex. It can even make you unable to remember what sex you had, or who you had sex with.
The Effects Of Heavy Drinking
Alcohol is a low-level toxin (poison) which is why it can damage the heart, the liver and the brain of heavy drinkers. Over a long period heavy drinking can lead to liver disease, cancers of the throat, mouth and liver, and brain damage.
Excessive drinking kills thousands of people each year. Just like other drugs, you can become addicted to alcohol. Alcohol addiction can be physical (for example, getting ‘the shakes’ is a withdrawal symptom) or psychological, giving you an intense craving to keep drinking.
You don’t have to drink every day to be an alcoholic! Binge drinking (isolated periods of excessive drinking, for example over weekends) is a common pattern of addiction to alcohol.
How Do I Know If I Need Help?
Alcohol addiction is very common. You could need help if you are not able to socialise, flirt, cruise, or have sex without using alcohol or if your partner, friends or family have expressed concern about your drinking. You certainly need to address your alcohol use if it has got you into trouble with the law or has caused problems with your relationships, your job or your finances.
If you have had unsafe sex because you were under the influence of alcohol you definitely need to do something about your drinking.
HOW CAN I GET HELP?
Avoid hanging out with friends who socialise in taverns, shebeens or bars; find other healthier ways to spend your free time.
Speak to your healthcare provider about your drinking; admitting that alcohol is a problem for you is an important step. Ask them about organisations in your area that could help you. Cities and most towns have regular AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) meetings, and large cities often have gay AA groups.
By reducing your drinking, or stopping altogether, you will improve your health, have better relationships and be able to look after your own sexual health.