Omega X Rae Oct 29, 2009
article on safety around alcohol use.
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Alcohol is an intoxicant, meaning it lowers vital activity and physical and mental control. It is also known as a downer or sedative. It has a very long history of use in humans and other animals. It is a very common psychoactive, legal in the US for those 21 and older. So common and social acceptable that its effects other then intoxication are often not known or talked about. In a survey from 2005, people 12 or older said they drank alcohol in the past month, that’s approximately 126 million people (stat taken from drugwarfacts.org). Alcohol is usually consumed as a beverage but can be injected intravenously. It is quite physically addictive and many people find it very mentally/emotionally additive.
Some effects of alcohol are: blackouts and memory loss at high doses, brain and liver damage with heavy use, changed aesthetic appreciation, changed response in sexual stimuli (often increased), coma and death with extreme doses, confusion, decreased coordination, drowsiness, dizziness, emotional volatility (anger, violence, sadness, etc), fetal damage in pregnancy, flushed skin, frequent urination / diuretic effect, giddiness, happiness, “hangover” lasting 12 to 36 hours, analgesic effects (kills pain), lowered inhibitions, visual distortion, mood lift, nausea, nystagmus (difficulty focusing eyes), reduced impulse control, reduced social anxiety, relaxation, slurred speech, sleepiness, talkativeness, tolerance with repeated use within a few days, and vomiting (vomiting while unconscious can result in death).
There are some things to look out for when using alcohol. Alcohol causes dehydration so it is still important to remember to drink water. Don’t drink on an empty stomach. Alcohol shouldn’t be mixed with other depressants, some prescription meds, ecstasy or other psychoactives that cause dehydration. Operating heavy machinery or driving is not suggested while under the influence of alcohol. A “hangover” is not just something that happens, it is damage to your brain and liver, it is your body detoxing from the poison of alcohol. A “hangover” won’t kill you but detoxing from alcohol can result in death, when it has been used heavily. The best thing to do for a “hangover” is drink lots of water, get sleep, eat or drink sweet things (like fruit) and think about how you can prevent it from happening again.
One way of being safer with alcohol is knowing your limit. If you haven’t tried alcohol before I suggest starting with beer or wine not hard alcohol. Different kinds of alcohols have different effects on different people, what works from one person may not work for you and vice versa. As with any psychoactive start slow and work your way up. Another way is designating a sober driver, if you are planning on driving anywhere. Driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal and very dangerous. If you’re not going to be driving it may be good to have a sober sitter around, especially if you are new to drinking. And one more way is not having another drink when you feel like you’re on a nice level, if you’re not having a good time more alcohol probably isn’t going to make it any better. Don’t let yourself feel pressured to drink; your boundaries are your responsibility to up hold.
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