Stages of Intoxication
One drink – Euphoria, Relaxation
Two drinks – Talkative
Three drinks – Impairment of judgement, reaction time lowered
Four drinks – Lack of motor co-ordination
Five drinks – Drunkenness, evident deterioration in physical and social control
Seven drinks – Staggering and double vision, vomiting
Fifteen drinks – Loss of consciousness, dilated pupils
Extremely large doses – Breathing stops, can result in death
The Hangover: the after effects of drinking
Effects of alcohol on the body
Alcohol does not need digestion. It is absorbed directly through the walls of the stomach and the small intestines into the blood stream. Once in the blood stream, alcohol travels to all parts of the body including the stomach, heart, kidneys, liver and the brain. Once alcohol is absorbed into the blood stream and distributed throughout the body, the process of oxidation begins.
The liver plays a major role in the breakdown or oxidation of alcohol. As a result of the process of oxidation, alcohol is changed into carbon-di-oxide, water and energy. The calories thus produced have absolutely no nutritional value. They are only empty calories, which may result in a ‘pot belly’.
The liver can burn alcohol only at a certain pace. It takes approximately one hour for one unit of alcohol (8- 10gms) to get out of the body.
Exercise, cold shower, hot bath, black coffee – none of these will help in making one sober. All that one can do is to wait and let the liver do its work.
Alcohol’s effects vary according to the amount of food eaten, body weight, experience in drinking and setting. For example, a person who is thin feels the effect of alcohol more quickly than a person who weighs more. Alcohol affects everybody, some more quickly than others.