For fans of alcohol, the idea of additional alcohol may be appealing; less fuss, more drunk, so to speak. For alcohol aficionados, and for those of us on the road, too much alcohol can be a problem – a big problem. Alcohol is regulated for safety reasons, and we rely on the labels on our favorite beer or liquor to give us the right information. Unfortunately, human error is always a factor that can quickly lead to a drinking disaster, for even the most careful carouser.
We rely on “BAC math,” the ability to calculate how much we’ve been drinking based on a standard serving size and the percentage of alcohol contained in that service. Just like too much alcohol can ruin the taste of a drink, too much alcohol in a drink can lead to much worse situations. There are reasons why Everclear is a controversial beverage, especially the 190-proof version that is 95% alcohol. Our bodies can metabolize alcohol only so quickly, so a higher proof brings more risk of a drinking disaster.
Common drinking disasters include:
- Health problems: liver disease, diabetes, depression, cancer, etc.
- Injuries: falling, tripping, burns and other emergency situations.
- Sexual and simple assault: alcohol lowers inhibitions, decreases judgment and can increase violent tendencies.
- DUI and drunk driving: Having three standard drinks in an hour can raise a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) above the legal limit. When the alcohol in those drinks is increased, drunk driving dangers rise, too. At the very least, you could end up with an ignition interlock.
It may be fun to joke about a higher percentage of alcohol, but the reality is that the more alcohol we consume, the higher we risk involvement in those drinking disasters. Drinking safely, having a safe ride home and knowing the risks of too much alcohol keeps everyone on the same page, and hopefully out of hot water from those disasters.