When presented with a situation that involves consumption of alcohol, the importance of going into that situation prepared cannot be overstated. Having set strategies to ensure your own and others safety while drinking not only makes sense, it can save you from potentially dangerous and even life-threatening situations. Presented here are some strategies that help promote a safer drinking experience:
- Set a drinking limit before you begin to drink. Alcohol clouds decision-making and increases confidence, a combination that often leads to risky situations.
- When going out to drink, plan to get home without driving. Use a designated driver, call a taxi, take the bus, or walk. Alcohol-related accidents account for more than 40% of all driving fatalities.
- Sip and enjoy your drink. Let the taste and good feeling linger. Drinking for speed and quantity skyrockets your BAC, diminishing the pleasurable effects of alcohol and increasing the likelihood of blackout, vomiting, or passing out.
- Space your drinks—your body needs time to process alcohol. One drink per hour for someone of average size (5’4, 144 pounds) is reasonable. You may want to alternate alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
- Drink water while drinking alcohol. Use the water to quench your thirst, not the alcohol—when you are thirsty, you drink faster, and alcohol only contributes to dehydration.
- Eat sufficiently before and while drinking. Food- especially things high in protein- slows down alcohol absorption and keeps your drink from hitting you too fast.
- Count your drinks. Know the size of a standard drink. Be aware of how fast you are drinking. Stop drinking when you have reached your limit.
- Avoid drinking games. Competitive drinking puts pressure on you to drink more than the right amount for you. Remember, BAC level per drink differs radically according to weight, gender and metabolic factors. Maximize the quality of your experience. Don’t try to match someone else.
- Unwanted and unprotected sex often occurs under the influence of alcohol.
- Remember, alcohol doesn’t improve sex. Often the opposite is true.
- Watch out for your friends and have them watch out for you. 90% of all college date and acquaintance rapes are alcohol-related.
How Much to Drink?
Caffeinated Alcoholic Beverages