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Understanding the Effects of Binge Drinking

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism there are an estimated 15 percent of people ranging in age from 12-20 who were binge drinkers. These statistics are becoming more and more staggering everyday. While binge drinking is not classified as actual alcoholism or alcohol use disorder the results can be just as devastating.

It is important to understand just what the effects binge drinking can have in a person mentally and physically. For many the goal of binge drinking is total intoxication. Typically with intoxication there are a host of many other dangers, including dizziness, loss of coordination, complete lack of judgment in decision-making, and alcohol poisoning, which, in some circumstances can prove to be fatal. By definition according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, binge drinking is a pattern of drinking alcohol that brings a person’s blood alcohol level to a .08 or higher. In a man this would equate to drinking about 5 or more drinks within a two-hour time period and for a woman it would equal 4 or more drinks in that same time period.

Some of the Short-term Effects

consequences of alcohol

Binging on alcohol – which may be less drinks than you think – can lead to short and long term problems.

Always bear in mind that most effects are based on the amount of alcohol, the length of time they have been binge drinking and their overall physical health.

  • Slurred speech
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
  • Headaches
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Hearing loss and distorted vision
  • Lack of or poor judgment
  • Lessened perception and coordination
  • Unconsciousness
  • Alcohol induced coma
  • Memory Lapses or blackouts

Long Term Effects of Binge Drinking

Binge drinking and continued alcohol abuse for those who are binging more frequently or in larger amounts can be faced with many health issues such as:

  • A variety of unintentional injuries such as car accidents, falls, drowning or burns
  • Risky injuries such as firearm injuries, sexual assault and domestic violence
  • An increase in work related injuries, illness and loss of productivity
  • Loss or fragmented relationships with family and friends
  • Alcohol poisoning which can be fatal
  • High blood pressure, stroke, and other heart-related diseases
  • Kidney or liver disease
  • Nerve damage
  • Irreversible brain damage
  • Unplanned pregnancy
  • Possibility of contracting sexually transmitted diseases
  • Ulcers or Gastritis, which is an inflammation of stomach walls
  • Poor eating habits
  • Sexual or hormonal dysfunction

If you are binging then you should be aware of the harm that you are doing to yourself and your body. You need to understand that even if you manage to avoid accidental injury or the legal issues that can be associated with binge drinking, it is a dangerous practice and should be stopped as soon as possible. The body will be able to heal once you have stopped for a period of time.


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