Health problems & injuries

As we age, we’re more likely to have health problems that can be made worse by drinking alcohol.

Alcohol can also cause new health problems. Other health conditions can be harder to diagnose or treat if people drink alcohol.

Problems affected by alcohol include:

  • high blood sugar (diabetes)
  • high blood pressure
  • some cancers (eg, breast, mouth, throat, liver and bowel)
  • memory loss (eg, dementia)
  • liver problems
  • stomach problems (eg, ulcers)
  • sleep problems – insomnia
  • weak bones (osteoporosis)
  • depression, anxiety and other mental health problems
  • incontinence (wetting or soiling yourself).

Talk with your doctor or another health professional about how alcohol may be affecting your health.

Go to the alcohol-related health conditions section for more detailed information

Go to the alcohol and existing conditions section for more detailed information

Alcohol and injury

Drinking alcohol can increase your chance of being injured, such as from falls and motor vehicle crashes.

A person with mobility difficulties or other disabilities has an increased chance of falling if they’ve been drinking.