Don’t Ignore These Early Signs of Liver Damage From Alcohol

The liver does a lot of very important work in our bodies.

This organ is located in the upper right area of the abdomen, and when something isn’t right, it can start to hurt.

What Does the Liver do to Alcohol?

The liver acts as a fitter, of sorts, by breaking down substances that we ingest that could be harmful to the body, in other words the liver breaks down toxic substances such as alcohol. When you drink a lot, the liver can’t always keep up, and this can cause damage to the liver.

Before we go any further, if you’re experiencing pain in your liver or any of these signs, please seek medical attention. Don’t put it off. It could be nothing, or it could be serious and if it’s serious then you want to take care of it sooner rather than later.

As an alcoholic, sometimes it’s tempting to just have another drink and try to forget about your problems. Sometimes, everything is just so overwhelming that you don’t even know where to start, in terms of beginning to take better care of yourself. Still, if you’re experiencing pains in your liver, or other early signs of liver damage, don’t put this off, go see a doctor. Doctors see stuff like this all day, it won’t even register as a blip on their radar (In case you’re worried about being judged). Whatever you’re going through, healthcare professionals have seen it 100 times this week, and they’ll be able to put you on the right path to healing.

Or at the very least, they’ll be able to let you know what’s causing your liver problems, and if it’s even something serious or not. Wouldn’t you rather know that it’s no big deal, rather than rolling the dice and hoping it isn’t serious?

Seriously. Go get checked out if you’re concerned for your liver health, don’t rely on any articles to diagnose you. Here, we’re simply sharing a few of the early signs, so that you can get ahead of things before they get worse. Don’t use a website as a form of diagnosis, but do use this as a push towards visiting a professional.

Also know that this isn’t an exhaustive list of every possible early sign of liver damage, these are just some of the more common ones. Again, you should never rely on any website to diagnose you either as sick or healthy, it’s just not possible to do. We can pass along some signs to look out for, but you really need to visit a doctor or a nurse to find out what’s going on. There’s a reason that medical professionals spend so many years in school and in training, and still need to consult one another sometimes.

If you’re here looking for validation that your liver is just fine, even if you have concerns, you won’t find that here! We can’t tell you whether or not your liver is in good shape, you need to get it checked out.

Okay, with that out of the way, here are some early signs of liver damage that can be a cause for concern.

It can take years of drinking to really cause big harm to your liver, but it can happen sooner for some people. Pay attention to the signs of teenage alcoholism, in case someone in your life needs help early on in their battle with alcohol.

5 Early Signs of Liver Damage


Fatigue can be a sign that your liver isn’t doing great, but it can also be a sign of a lot of different issues, and many of them can be the result of drinking. If you feel fatigued and it just won’t go away, this could be a sign of something more serious than just being a little tired. If you’re fatigued here and there, think about the basics like getting enough sleep and drinking enough water. If your fatigue persists, it wouldn’t hurt to get checked out.

Swelling Of the Liver

Your liver can become swollen over time. You can’t really check for this yourself, but you may feel a bit of extra pressure or discomfort in the form of pain, in the area that your liver is located.

If you feel discomfort or pain in your liver, get it looked at, full stop. If you have swelling or fat building up in the liver, you want to get this sorted out as soon as you notice it, don’t wait for it to get worse.

Feeling Nauseous

Feeling sick or nauseous isn’t a strange feeling for many people with alcohol problems, it’s basically a part of life to feel hungover and ill, whether it comes from drinking or from alcohol withdrawal symptoms (See: should I stop drinking?).

Because of this, you can’t always tell if the nauseous feeling is caused by the alcohol itself, a withdrawal, or even a health condition that’s been caused by drinking or something else. Feeling nauseous can be an indication of a lot of different health concerns, so if it doesn’t pass soon, you should pay close attention to it and seek medical help as needed, especially if it’s happening along with other symptoms.

Not Feeling Hungry

Having a loss of appetite can signal that something’s not quiet right, but it can mean a lot of different things. That’s why this, too, is a sympytom that’s worth a quick visit to the walk or your family doctor.

When your body becomes reliant on alcohol through severe alcoholism, this can impact your appetite as well, and alcoholism is closely tied to liver programs. A loss of appetite can be an early sign of liver damage, and a lack of proper nutrition and food can cause a whole slew of other health problems over time.

Skin Turning Yellow (Jaundice)

Jaundice is when your skin or your eyes start to turn yellowish. The yellowing of yoru skin and eyes, known as Jaundice, can be a sign of alcohol hepatitis, which is a condition of the liver.

There are a number of different conditions that can hurt your liver and that are brought on by drinking too much. Think about giving your liver a break if you’ve been putting it through a lot, give it a chance to catch up and do it’s job without being overwhelmed and overworked.

And don’t hesitate to visit a healthcare professional if you have these early signs of liver damage, or any other conditions or symptoms that are starting to arise. It’s always better to catch these things first, and when you drink a lot, you’re at a greater risk so please, try to reduce the harm by doing what you can to stay on top of your health.

Category: Addiction
Martijn van Eijk
Martijn is a passionate creator and the driving force behind He created this website to assist individuals and their families in conquering alcohol addiction and finding a joyful, fulfilling life after alcohol. With a deep understanding of the challenges they face, he empowers readers with valuable insights and practical guidance on their journey towards recovery. Author of the Stop Shaking Book.