Drinking. Photo Credit: notcub.

Drinking. Photo Credit: notcub.

Broken heart, debt, resignation, loneliness … no matter the problem, for many people the ‘cure’, even momentarily, is simple to find: doses and more doses of alcohol. But, raise the hand who never drank to forget!

Myth or not, the truth is that the idea that alcohol helps to forget about problems is widespread in songs, movies, books and even in conversations among friends, which reinforces this folk wisdom about the miracles that the drink performs. But this universal truth is ready to be overthrown.

A study published in the journal Translational Psychiatry, prepared by researchers at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore (USA), concluded that bad memories could cling to our brain duller when we are drunk than if we did not.

To reach this result, the researchers divided laboratory mice into two groups: one drank water for two hours, and the other was given large amounts of alcohol in the same time interval. Subsequently, both groups were submitted to a determined sound, followed by an electric discharge. The next day, the rodents heard the same sound, but this time without being followed by the shock. The results showed that mice that had been drunk were more afraid than those who had drunk water.

The paper concludes that alcohol perpetuates a sense of fear: the extinction of this recall requires receptors of the neurotransmitter glutamate (memory-related substance), and when the alcohol compounds bind to these receptors, they interfere with the synapses (neuronal communication), leading to animals that drank alcohol.

So, if you drink to forget the best is to stay away from alcohol.