In The Know Zone

Binge Drinking

Even though it is legal for people over 21, alcohol is a harmful, dangerous drug. It can seem at times that "everyone" drinks, even that "everyone" drinks a lot. But these are myths. There are plenty of people who don’t drink at all, and the vast majority of people do not drink heavily.

Binge drinking is irresponsible, heavy drinking that often comes under the disguise of fun and games. Binge drinking is terribly dangerous to the drinker and to people around him or her. Binge drinkers:

  • Drink "to get drunk." The goal is to lose control. A person can’t lose control of just someof his or her body, mind, and behavior; the loss of control regularly slops over into hazard zones.
  • They drink large quantities.
  • They drink quickly.
  • They do foolish, potentially deadly things like driving drunk, starting fights, and taking unnecessary risks of all kinds.

It is possible to be a responsible drinker after age 21, but it means paying attention to drinking behavior. Adults who do drink responsibly have a few key things in common:

  • First and foremost, they don’t drive after drinking.
  • They don’t drink "to get drunk." They may like the taste of the drink, or may be seeking a mild relaxing effect. They stop drinking before they feel "drunk."
  • They drink less than – usually far less than – four drinks on any one occasion.
  • They drink slowly, often with food, and have non-alcoholic drinks in between alcoholic drinks.

Take some time and check out this site on binge drinking. It's packed full of information and images that can help you make informed, healthy decisions. When you're finished surfing, you can see how much you've learned by taking our interactive quiz.. You might be surprised at how well you do.

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