It’s no surprise to anyone that alcohol consumption may cause a person to do some regrettable things in life. By all appearances, drinking alcohol would seem to be relatively harmless. After all, a substance that’s completely legal couldn’t be all that dangerous, right?
That is what many people continue to tell themselves as they irresponsibly and recklessly abuse alcohol.
However, just because a substance is legal doesn’t mean it’s not dangerous. Prescription drugs, for example, are surely legal substances, but their legality hinges on their use. When they’re misused, they are illegal. While it’s not quite the same case with alcohol, it’s problematic to assume that a mind-altering substance is safe simply because it can be obtained legally.
With so many people regularly abusing alcohol and experiencing many of the same effects, there are a number of behaviors that have become somewhat stereotypical of someone who is intoxicated due to the overconsumption of alcohol.
The following are some warnings that would be extremely accurate and appropriate if printed on bottles of alcohol.
WARNING: Alcohol Consumption May Cause Untimely Pregnancy
There’s a common image associated with alcohol abuse, and it entails lots of early-20s college students or young adults getting wasted and being extremely promiscuous with one another. While the stereotype of college-age party-goers is surely exaggerated to a degree, it’s exceedingly common for people to have risky sexual encounters after becoming intoxicated from alcohol.
In many instances, these encounters are consensual between both parties, but there are a number of instances when they’re not consensual. Additionally, since people under the influence are more likely to forego (or forget) protection, these impulsive sexual encounters leave the participants—who sometimes don’t even know one another and won’t trade names afterward—at risk of contracting a sexually-transmitted disease and unexpected pregnancies.
WARNING: Alcohol Consumption May Cause You to Think You Can Drive Yourself Home as Long as You Keep One Eye Closed
Driving a vehicle is one of the absolute worst things a person can do while intoxicated from alcohol. Not only does it put the drunken driver’s life and the lives of any passengers at risk, but it puts the general public at risk, too. Each and every other driver on the road at the same time as an intoxicated driver is at significant risk of getting into an accident and possibly even being killed.
And it’s much more common than we like to think: Approximately 28 people are killed in car accidents caused by at least one drunk driver every single day. That’s significantly more DUI deaths than there are hours in the day.
WARNING:Alcohol Consumption May Cause Mysterious Bruising and Inexplicable Injuries
People who abuse alcohol are typically prone to accidental injuries. Have you ever wondered why that might be? The answer is fairly obvious: It’s the alcohol abuse that results in the majority of these injuries.
As a depressant, alcohol inhibits proper motor coordination, equilibrium, and judgment, which is the perfect recipe for injury. In fact, the World Health Organization estimates that about half of all deaths that can be attributed to alcohol are due to unintentional injuries sustained while under the influence.
And in many cases the injuries themselves weren’t fatal, but rather the injuries led to some type of disease that resulted in fatality. Although these accidental deaths from injury while under the influence of alcohol are most common in lower- to middle-income countries, it remains a prominent issue in the U.S.
WARNING: Alcohol Consumption May Cause You to Phone Previous Lovers to Confess How Much You Miss Them and Want Them Back
Speaking generally, people tend to be forward-thinking and, therefore, aren’t likely to suddenly regress to a state of emotional immaturity without some type of provocation. Unfortunately, alcohol has been found to be a source of provocation.
This provocation is why some people show a tendency to be extremely, uncharacteristically emotional while under the influence of alcohol. Worse yet is the fact that significantly lower inhibitions make these individuals likely to act on those emotions.
According to experts, this tends to be most common in people who avoid emotional situations and prefer to suppress or resist emotion rather than confront them. Additionally, there’s a tendency for some people to use alcohol as an antidote to intense emotions while for others drinking alcohol is like opening the emotional floodgates.
WARNING: Alcohol Consumption May Make You Believe You’re Evel Knievel
In many social circles, companions make observations about each other’s demeanor and behaviors while intoxicated from alcohol. Some are identified as being “goofy drunks” who laugh a lot and want to make others laugh while others are “sad drunks” who are known to suddenly start sobbing without provocation.
Another type of drinker was always the one who was extremely reckless and impulsive, and many of us assumed that it was a roll of the dice as to which type of drinker a given person might be. However, recent research has found that those who exhibit extremely reckless and destructive behaviors while under the influence of alcohol actually do so because of a particular gene.
According to the study, there’s little indication that this gene is present besides a tendency for alcohol to make people significantly more likely to take huge risks. The study asserts that this gene that is otherwise undetectable is why so many people who abuse alcohol seem to behave in such irrationally dangerous ways.
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