“If you keep on drinking rum, the world will soon be quit of a very dirty scoundrel!”
– Robert Louis Stevenson, Treasure Island
In the present day, we hear this term binge drinking very often as there are many youngsters indulging in it. For the uninitiated, binge drinking essentially means having excessive amounts of alcohol during one sitting. Binge drinking can lead to abnormal blood alcohol levels and is extremely dangerous. In many cases it can even lead to death.
Statistics show that binge drinking causes more than 80,000 deaths annually. If an adult male consumes 5 or more drinks in a row, it can be called excessive alcohol consumption or binge drinking. In the case of women, it is 4 or more drinks in a row.
When people indulge in binge drinking, their objective is to forget the world and remain intoxicated. Once they are in an inebriated state, it is highly risky as their reflexes are slow. This is because alcohol impairs the working of the central nervous system. The brain becomes dull, and alertness drops. Binge drinking can cause victims to experience dizziness and vomiting. In some cases, those who drink excessively pass out. It is risky if they choke on their vomit at such a time, which increases the chance of death. Excessive drinking also leads to deficient judgment. The brain is in a confused state and they can make a lot of mistakes. Sometimes these mistakes can turn out to be very costly. For instance, driving in an intoxicated state increases the risk of fatal accidents.
Why is Binge Drinking Life Threatening?
Binge drinking can lead to a lot of inadvertent harm. There is an elevated risk of accidents, falls and serious road mishaps for those who drink and drive. Alcohol abuse also increases suicidal tendencies. Often, those who are high on alcohol are in a highly uninhibited state. They tend to go overboard and are unable to exercise restraint during their drunken stupor.
When alcohol is not consumed in moderation, it can damage the heart and nervous system. This will have long-term repercussions on health. The risks of binge drinking include:
- Motor vehicle crashes
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Domestic violence
- Heart attack
Excessive alcohol adversely affects the central nervous system. Rational thinking is impaired and this can create an error in judgment. Binge drinking damages heart rate and slows down breathing. Excessive drinking can cause confusion. Binge drinking can lead to seizures and the victim can lose consciousness. Binge drinking can lead to black outs. This is surely an indication of acute alcohol intoxication. Those who indulge in binge drinking can often develop alcoholism.
Alcohol-impaired driving, suicide and unintentional injuries are a result of binge drinking. Further, binge drinking can give rise to sexually transmitted diseases, the risk of unintended pregnancy, elevated blood pressure, stroke, and liver disease. Excessive drinking also causes inflammation of the pancreas.
Binge drinking is extremely dangerous as studies have shown that even one night of binge drinking can lead to liver damage. And when this is prolonged the liver damage is irreversible. Additionally, when a person indulges in excessive amounts of alcohol, the fluctuation in blood alcohol level can lead to problems in heart rhythm. Heart rhythm abnormality exacerbates the risk of stroke. Continuous alcohol abuse can cause permanent heart damage. Binge drinking also damages the nerves and is harmful for the brain.
Skin cells in the mouth are delicate and binge drinking can cause damage to the skin cells. It can also damage the esophagus especially among the younger lot. Research has also shown that adolescent brains are severely affected due to binge drinking. The development in the brain retards due to excessive alcohol. Drinkers are under great risk, especially as it can cause cancer of the mouth and esophagus. Binge drinking can lead to risky behaviours, it can cause alcohol poisoning. In extreme cases it can lead to coma and even death.
Time to ask the question; is it worth abusing alcohol? What purpose does it serve? Take stock of your life, for you have just one to lead. So live your life healthy!