Alcohol slows down the flow of information between nerve cells in the brain. It also reduces motor control, resulting in slurred speech.
Alcohol widens blood vessels. This causes poor blood circulation and blue coloration of the skin. This can cause heat loss, resulting in hypothermia.
The stomach lining is irritated by alcohol. It responds by producing even more acid, leading to a stronger irritation. Heavy drinking can thus cause ulcers, acid reflux, heartburn, and gastritis.
Alcohol shuts down the brain, which regulates breathing. This induces irregular breathing, defined as a gap of more than 10 seconds between breaths.
A dysfunctional pancreas and liver raise the risk of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). This can cause seizures.
Alcohol relaxes the throat, suppressing the cough reflex. This reduces the lungs’ ability to clear mucus and other substances which cause pneumonia.
The liver breaks down toxins. Excessive drinking can lead to liver damage. This induces hepatitis and jaundice. Chronic liver inflammation can cause cirrhosis, stopping liver function.
Alcohol increases serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for euphoria. The brain adapts and builds tolerance. This develops dependence and triggers withdrawal.
Call 911 immediately and after that should be done the following:
- Give them water, if they are able to drink
- Keep them in a sitting position or lay them on their side
- Keep the individual awake
- Don’t leave someone to sleep it off. Alcohol already in the digestive system will continue to be absorbed.
- Don’t give them coffee. Alcohol and coffee together can lead to severe dehydration.
- Don’t induce vomiting. They can choke on their own vomit.
- Don’t walk them around. Alcohol affects balance and might cause accidents