October 18, 2020

liver disease image

Liver disease refers to any disturbance to the function of the liver that causes illness, and is thought to affect millions of adults across the world. While we don’t immediately think of the liver as an important organ, some experts actually think it’s the most important one of all – which is why it can be so damaging when the liver ceases to work properly.

Like many health concerns, the faster you can detect liver disease, the easier it is to treat. There are two main types of the illness: non-alcoholic liver disease, which doesn’t usually have symptoms and is reversible with lifestyle changes, and alcoholic liver disease, which is caused by excess alcohol consumption.

The early signs of liver disease in alcoholics include:

Irregular sleep

If you’re sleeping poorly, you may have early-stage    alcoholic liver disease. The illness is known to cause sleeping problems such as insomnia, which is characterised by difficulties falling asleep and maintaining sleep, and sleep–wake inversion, when your sleep cycles are disrupted. 

Irregular sleep is an early sign of liver disease

Low energy levels

Liver disease causes excessive daytime sleepiness, as well as fatigue, which studies have found to occur a result of changes in neurotransmissions within the brain.    

Yellowed skin and eyes

Even at the earliest stages of alcoholic liver disease, your skin and eyes may take on a yellow colour that is referred to as jaundice. It occurs when If bilirubin, which is formed when haemoglobin is broken down to recycle old or damaged red blood cell, can’t be moved through the liver and bile ducts quickly enough.

Skin problems

Signs of liver damage may develop on your skin. Some of these symptoms include redness, severe itching, brown patches, and dryness of the skin. These symptoms may come about as a result of a skin condition, like eczema, psoriasis, and acne, which are sometimes caused by liver disease.    

Becoming intoxicated more quickly and experiencing worse hangovers

Becoming intoxicated more quickly and experiencing worse hangovers because your liver is damaged by alcohol

When your liver becomes damaged by alcohol, it won’t be able to perform properly when you do drink. This means you’re likely to become intoxicated more quickly after minimal amounts of alcohol, and you’ll experience a worse hangover the next morning.

Experiencing severe side effects to common medications

Liver disease can affect the way we metabolize drugs, even those that are incredibly common. This may cause you to experience toxic reactions to certain drugs.

Hot flushes

A dysfunctional liver is more likely to overheat as a result of overworking and too much pressure. This can cause the body to react by sweating, resulting in flushing in the top half of your body, including your face, your trunk, and your arms.

What Are The Early Signs of Liver Disease

Side Effects of Liver Damage

When you begin to experience early liver damage, your body won’t be able perform its usual functions properly, like digesting food, removing impurities, filtering toxins and absorbing nutrients. This can lead to side effects such as:

Weight loss is a side effect of liver damage
  • Weight loss - as a result of not taking in the nutrients you need.          
  • Malnutrition and weakness – for the same reasons as mentioned.          
  • Nausea and vomiting – as a result of harmful toxins remaining inside your body instead of being removed.        
  • Bruising of the skin – due to a decreased production of blood clotting factors by the diseased liver.
liver stops making enough platelets to help with blood clotting which can cause nosebleeds
  • Bleeding gums and nosebleeds – which happens more easily because the liver stops making enough platelets to help with blood clotting.    
  • Constipation and abdominal bloating – as a result of poor breakdown of fat.        
  • Diarrhea – caused by bacterial overgrowth in the body.          
  • Loss of appetite – usually linked to poor digestive ability.          
  • Dark urine – because of the high levels of bilirubin excreted through the kidneys.

Non-alcoholic liver damage doesn’t always present symptoms until the later stages of the disease. However, symptoms to look out for include:

  • Yellowing of the eyes and skin, or jaundice.          
  • Fatigue.          
  • Pain and discomfort in the abdomen.

Non alcoholic liver disease can be caused by a range of factors, including obesity, malnutrition, cancer, hepatitis, inflammation resulting from an injury or infection, a medication overdose, or diabetes.

Bestseller No. 1
Liver Cleanse Detox & Repair Complex - Herbal Liver Support Supplement with Silymarin Milk Thistle Artichoke Extract Dandelion Root Organic Turmeric and Berberine - Milk Thistle Liver Detox Supplement
  • Natural Effective supplements to promote strong functioning liver with milk thistle dandelion root artichoke beet root yarrow & chicory root all known for promoting healthy liver function
  • Milk thistle capsules blend - Our silymarin milk thistle complex with choline bitartrate works to maintain normal liver function infused with herbal extracts for comprehensive liver and kidney support
  • Milk thistle ingredient in complex known to nourish & help repair liver - Natural capsules stimulate new liver cell production - Milk thistle may lower cholesterol while improving skin health with anti-aging properties
  • Herbal complex - Our antioxidant filled complex uses rich and botanical ingredients like celery seed extract burdock root grape seed extract and yellow dock root to help support your wellness
Bestseller No. 2
Pet Wellbeing Milk Thistle Natural Liver Disease Support Supplement for Cats, 2 fl. oz., 2 OZ
  • Supports the natural function of the liver when faced with the toxicity of other medications
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SaleBestseller No. 3
Organic India Liver Kidney Herbal Supplement - Detoxify & Rejuvenate, Supports Healthy Liver & Kidney Function, Vegan, Gluten-Free, Kosher, USDA Certified Organic, Non-GMO - 90 Capsules
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Bestseller No. 4
Liver Support Supplement for Dogs & Cats - Milk Thistle Liver Support - Canine Hepatic Care - Cat & Dog Liver Cleanse - Max Effect Liquid Drops
  • FOR LIVER WELLBEING: The filtering of toxins that the liver performs is critical. If it becomes clogged with toxins itself or is damaged in any way, your pet can experience any one of a host of potentially life-threatening problems such as liver disease and the slowing of metabolic processes. This pet milk thistle helps detoxify and cleanse the liver so it can most effectively do its job while increasing general immunity of your dog or cat.
  • TASTES GREAT: As this is a milk thistle liquid for dogs and cats, you simply squeeze a few drops into your pet’s food, and they will enjoy it just as much as their breakfast or dinner. Meanwhile, the silymarin will go right to work providing a complete liver detox for dogs and cats alike.
  • BROAD-SPECTRUM SUPPORT: While not a Cushing’s Disease treatment for dogs, “dog milk” can help lower the high cortisol levels associated with the disease. Through its effectiveness as a dog kidney failure treatment and canine appetite stimulant, milk thistle helps keep both the liver and the kidneys operating at peak efficiency.
  • MADE THE RIGHT WAY: We source the highest-quality milk thistle, then we extract the potent silymarin responsible for its liver detox properties into a liquid form with the highest bioavailability suitable for ingestion by dogs and cats. We manufacture our cat and canine milk thistle right here in the USA. We feed it to our furry companions, and we hope you’ll feed it to yours.

When to see a doctor

see your doctor as soon as possible to discuss your symptoms

If you think you might have alcoholic or non-alcoholic liver disease, it’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible to discuss your symptoms. If left untreated, your inflamed liver will start to scar. As this scar tissue grows, it will begin to replace healthy liver tissue.

On the other hand, if your liver disease is diagnosed and treated successfully at an early stage, there's still a chance that your liver can heal itself over time. Therefore, the more quickly you can diagnose liver disease, the better your chances of successfully treating the condition in the long run.

Giving up alcohol

It goes without saying that if you’re diagnosed with alcoholic fatty liver disease, you’ll have a far better chance of recovering from the illness if you give up alcohol. Recovering from addiction isn’t easy, but there are plenty of medical treatments to make the process more achievable for everyone. 

If you regularly exceed daily alcohol limits, the best thing you can do for your health is to seek professional support.

About the author

Rachel Perono

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