Dangers of Binge drinking

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According to the World Health Organisation, in 2010 alcohol misuse was the fifth leading risk factor for premature death and disability. Between the ages of 15 and 49, it is the most common and in the age group 20–39 years, approximately 25 percent of the total deaths are attributed to alcohol.

Binge drinking is a form of alcohol abuse that is often overlooked, or even disregarded, as not being a serious problem.

Typical binge drinkers only drink alcohol a few days per week or month. They schedule their drinking sessions around other responsibilities, often holding down a good job, running a family or studying. As a result, the drinking looks to all intents and purposes – and to those around them - as being social, just having fun or otherwise normal. Problems begin to occur when this pattern of drinking changes, consequences deepen and then sometimes chronic daily drinking creeps in.

Binge drinking is defined as men consuming five or more drinks, and women four or more, within two hours. Generally, the liver breaks down one standard measure drink/per hour. Therefore, if you are drinking large quantities of alcohol in a short space of time your blood alcohol content will be extremely high. This can lead to not only health problems; a heavily intoxicated night out can also have a damaging cost to relationships and reputations.

Healthwise, long-term damage from heavy alcohol use isn’t limited to people with alcohol addiction (known as alcoholism), frequent binge drinkers can also develop health problems. And in some unlucky cases one binge can lead to serious consequences or even death.

The short-term negative effects of binge drinking include a raise in blood pressure, dehydration which is damaging to the kidneys, nausea leading to vomiting, which can cause choking whilst heavily intoxicated and various other injuries or accidents sustained whilst inebriated.

It also often results in a person having a loss of inhibitions which can lead to ill thought out decisions such as driving whilst under the influence, violent episodes or unintended sexual encounters.

Long-term effects can include; alcoholic liver disease, serious heart problems, pancreatitis and stomach ulcers. Heavy drinking has been linked to cancer of mouth, oesophagus, larynx, stomach, liver, colon, rectum, and breast.

Binge drinking is a serious problem with serious consequences. By not paying attention to how much you drink and how fast you consume alcohol you are putting yourself and others in real danger.

If you think you or a family member have a problem with alcohol, contact our professional addiction specialist team, Phoenix Programmes, on their confidential helpline +34 685 582 150

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