Alcohol enters the bloodstream through the stomach and intestine. Once in the bloodstream, it is carried to other parts of the body quite quickly. In fact, it reaches the brain almost immediately. Alcohol stays in the body until it is broken down by the liver and eventually leaves the body through breath, sweat and urine. The brain is the body's control centre, so alcohol has a big impact on the way we behave. The more alcohol in the blood, the greater the impact. Judgment, inhibitions, reaction time, co-ordination, vision, speech, balance, walking and standing are all affected by alcohol.
Beer commercials always make it seem like drinking beer will make you feel great, but it’s hard to know how people will act after drinking alcohol. A lot depends on the person’s mood and where they are drinking. After a couple of drinks, one person might be more relaxed, another depressed, another angry. In general, you'll feel more of what you were feeling before you started drinking. People who are depressed can feel even worse. Sometimes you will feel whatever you expect the alcohol to make you feel.
Yes, alcohol is a drug. Even though it is a legal one, it’s the drug that Albertans use the most. About 76% of Albertans drink alcohol and most do so responsibly. It is also the drug most commonly used by teens.
It is important to be very careful about mixing two kinds of drugs. Remember, alcohol is a drug, and some other drugs cause serious problems when used with alcohol. One of the greatest dangers in combining alcohol with other drugs it that the effects are not always possible to predict.
Because of the different percentages of alcohol in beer, wine and distilled liquor, people commonly believe that some kinds of alcoholic beverages are safer, or don't get you drunk as fast.
In fact, there’s about the same amount of alcohol in a bottle of beer (341 ml/12 oz.) as there is in a glass of wine (142 ml/5 oz.) or a shot of whisky (43 ml/1.5 oz.).
No. The type of drink makes no difference because whether it is in beer, wine or liquor, it's all alcohol.
There isn't one. Not cold showers, not black coffee, not any of the remedies people try. The only thing that helps to sober up is time, because the liver needs time to break down and eliminate the alcohol.
It can take hours for the body to get rid of the effects of one drink (one beer, one glass of wine or a single shot of whisky). So even if you have one drink an hour, alcohol builds up in your blood because you’re drinking faster than your body is breaking down that alcohol.
Speaking of the effects of alcohol, just as there’s no remedy to sober up, there’s no cure for a hangover other than time. Think of it as your body's way of grounding you. And the more you drink, the longer you're going to be grounded.
Current as of: May 29, 2017
Author: Addiction & Mental Health, Alberta Health Services
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