Your heavy drinking has made you worse at revision, study shows
Apparently drinking isn’t good for you
Buying your third bottle of vodka this week? Think again, fresher, as binge drinking will make your brain suffer even more than your hangover suggests.
Booze scientists have revealed in a groundbreaking study drinking in your teens and early twenties can have a permanent effect on your learning and memory.
Those partial to a bottle of vino every evening should be warned binge drinking in adolescence will alter your emotional maturity, as well as parts of your brain that govern your memory capacity.
Study author Mary-Louise Risher from Duke University in North Carolina said: “In the eyes of the law, once people reach 18 they are considered adult, but the brain continues to mature into the mid-twenties.
“It is important for young people to know that when they drink heavily there could be changes that have a lasting impact on memory and other cognitive functions.”
Experts behind the discovery gave adolescent rats enough alcohol to make them drunk for a period of time, before cutting off their supply, allowing them to grow into adults.
Results showed the adult rats which had drunk in early life were much worse at learning and remembering.
Scott Swartzwelder, who conducted the study, said: “At first blush, you’d think the animals would be smarter, but that’s the opposite of what we found.
“And it does make sense, because if you produce too much long-term potentiation the circuit is saturated and the animal stops learning.”
Dr Maria added: “It’s quite possible that alcohol disrupts the maturation process, which can affect these cognitive function later on.”