What is Wet Brain? Understanding Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome

What is Wet Brain? Understanding Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome

Drinking can cause a lot of problems for people, especially the drinker. Long-term drinking makes the drinker at still at risk for a myriad of issues, including mental health disorders and specific conditions and diseases. One particularly severe health problem that an alcoholic might have is “wet brain,” a slang term for Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome. The syndrome is a dangerous disorder caused by alcoholism. A severe thiamine deficiency causes it.

Alcohol Abuse Causes Nutritional Deficiencies

Thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency is common among people who chronically abuse alcohol. People who have been drinking heavily for an extended period of time don’t always have the best diet. Pair this with the fact that alcohol prevents thiamine absorption, and there are several health problems that a drinker can be susceptible to.

Not every person who has a thiamine deficiency gets wet brain. But a large number of people who chronically abuse alcohol have nutritional deficiencies that can lead to blood diseases, dementia, and other serious health problems.

Understanding “Wet Brain”

The term “wet brain” has been around a long time. It’s a term that’s used to describe Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome and a collection of symptoms caused by thiamine deficiency.

Symptoms in the early stage of the disease include a loss of appetite, fatigue, and irritability. These symptoms are all familiar to doctors and, in general, can signal a variety of conditions. A person with an alcohol use disorder may have multiple deficiencies.

Another, more evident and alarming symptom of wet brain is problems with motor coordination. A person with this condition may have slow reaction times even if they haven’t been drinking.

Thiamine is an essential vitamin to the body. When the brain is starved of it, it causes brain damage, which can lead to dementia. This means that a person may seem psychotic or have delusions. They may have significant lapses in the memory.

Curing Wet Brain

Because wet brain is brain damage, it cannot be cured. Some symptoms can be treated, but brain damage is usually severe. Treatment for a vitamin deficiency can be treated with injections or an IV. If treated immediately, the damage can be minimized.

Getting Help for Alcohol Addiction

Do you or somebody you love have a problem with drinking or drugs? Help is available. You’re not alone. No one has to be vulnerable to this disorder! Recovery from alcohol addiction is possible. We offer a safe, comforting, safe environment to get and stay sober.

Learn more about our detox services at 619-363-4767.