Alcohol abuse is the fourth most common preventable cause of death in the U.S., but do you know what exactly is considered abuse? Is it when you get drunk too many times per month? Is it when you have a glass of wine every day after work? What makes alcohol abuse, and how can you keep yourself and your family safe about this common condition?
While this number can vary slightly depending on factors like your weight, the CDC defines alcohol abuse, or excessive drinking, as 8 or more drinks per week for women and 15 or more drinks per week for men. After extended periods of excessive drinking, your body will begin to show serious symptoms, which can develop after only one year. To prepare everyone for February, a month with Superbowl tailgating and Mardi Gras, we’re going to list some key facts about alcohol consumption that may surprise you. Keep reading to learn more and be prepared not to fall into bad habits this February.
- If you’ve consumed 5 or more drinks in one sitting, that’s considered binge drinking. If you’re a woman, it’s 4 or more drinks. Binge drinking even for one night can have serious and lasting consequences, including death. When you drink heavily your body begins a full-force immune response to combat the bacterial toxins that have been released into your system. These are the same immune cells that fight fever, inflammation, and destroy tissue. An otherwise healthy person may suddenly become susceptible to serious illnesses after one night of binge drinking.
- Excessive drinking can contribute to cancer. While most of us know that alcohol abuse causes diseases like liver disease and pancreatitis, many others would be surprised to learn of its connection to cancer. Those who abuse alcohol are considerably more likely to develop certain types of cancer in areas such as the mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and pancreas.
- Just because you feel “okay” doesn’t mean you’re okay. Never drink and drive, even if you feel “sober enough” or “totally fine.” Not only does alcohol severely impact our ability to make responsible decisions, but you may not fully feel the effects of a drink until later when you’re already behind the wheel. Just because you’re not passed out or vomiting doesn’t mean your body is not already working in serious overtime to filter out the alcohol you’ve consumed.
It’s important to remember that being a responsible and conscientious drinker is about moderation, not necessarily complete elimination. Protect your future health by changing your daily routine today. Alcohol poisoning is a very serious condition and should be monitored especially around these February traditions. But if you’re careful and make sure you don’t binge drink, then you can avoid some of these health risks.
If you or a loved one is at the risk of alcohol poisoning, then Concho Valley ER will be here. Our freestanding ER offers treatment for alcohol poisoning and will do everything we can to keep you safe. There’s no better way to celebrate your favorite team’s win at the Super Bowl than to do it with good health.
Nutex Health, Inc supports you and your family’s health. You can depend on Concho Valley Emergency Center or any one of our concierge-level, freestanding emergency facilities to deliver the emergency care you deserve, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.