The Definition of Alcoholism
Alcoholism is defined as developing a dependence on alcohol where the body is physically unable to stop drinking alcohol even after expressing a desire to quit alcohol abuse. Individuals living with an alcohol use disorder will often experience strong or intense alcohol cravings. It is common for those living with alcohol addiction to experience negative physical, social, emotional, and mental consequences as a result of their drinking patterns. As your alcohol abuse progresses over time, your body becomes physically reliant on alcohol to function throughout the day without experiencing negative side effects. Individuals will begin to experience alcohol withdrawal when they attempt to quit alcohol consumption abruptly resulting in unpleasant, sometimes painful, or life-threatening if they do not have the support of an alcohol addiction treatment program.
What is Alcohol Poisoning
Alcohol poisoning occurs when a person has consumed a large amount of alcohol within a short period of time also known as binge drinking. Engaging in alcohol consumption within a short period of time will increase your risk of experiencing life-threatening symptoms or side effects. As the level of alcohol increases within your blood alcohol content, your body is unable to maintain a healthy physical, emotional, and mental functioning. An individual can experience alcohol poisoning even after they stop drinking alcohol as their blood alcohol content continues to increase for up to 40 minutes after their last alcoholic drinks.
Can You Overdose on Alcohol?
Just like any other substance abuse concern, there is a potential risk for serious health and physical side effects. When someone is engaging in binge drinking or heavy drinking patterns can significantly increase the risk of alcohol overdose. When you reach a blood alcohol content of .60% and .80% it puts the body at significant risk of becoming fatal.
If a person engages in binge drinking, where men have 5 or more drinks in a 2-hour period of time or 4 or more drinks in 2 hours for women, a person’s blood alcohol content will rise to over 0.08% blood alcohol content. These drinking behaviors significantly increase the risk of alcohol poisoning and overdose as a person’s blood alcohol levels can increase to dangerously high levels quickly.
Signs of Alcohol Overdose
The signs of alcohol overdose can range from person to person depending on the level of alcohol that has been consumed. Signs of alcohol overdose or alcohol poisoning are:
- Difficulty or inability to remain conscious
- Clammy skin or paleness of the skin
- Decreased or slow heart rate
- Mental confusion or mental stupor
- Slowed rate of breathing or irregular breathing patterns
- Loss of gag reflex
- Low body temperature resulting in chills or shivers
- Coma or unresponsiveness
If you are concerned that you or a loved one is experiencing an alcohol overdose or alcohol poisoning it is crucial that you get immediate medical care from healthcare treatment providers. There is the potential for dangerous or life-threatening symptoms of alcohol overdose to occur including vomiting while unconscious which can lead to individuals experiencing asphyxiation and which can potentially cause brain damage. If you are unsure if you should seek medical attention, it is best to call emergency public health officials to discuss the best course of action to ensure the safety of the individual.
Alcohol Rehab at Serenity Oaks Wellness Center
When you are concerned about a loved one’s alcohol consumption and the dangers of alcohol abuse including the potential of experiencing an alcohol overdose, the best way to support your loved one and prevent alcohol overdose is to provide the necessary support for an alcohol rehab program. At Serenity Oaks, we offer patients a safe environment to address their alcohol abuse and co-occurring mental health disorders. Patients will learn and treat the ongoing health risk that has been created with the support of safe alcohol interventions including evidence-based therapy methods and alcohol detox methods that are medically reviewed by our onsite doctors and nurses. Patients will have their vital signs monitored throughout their alcohol detox process to ensure that the health risks are minimized and mitigated while supporting patients to obtain a life of sobriety and happiness.
We are waiting by the phone to answer any questions you have about your alcohol abuse and our methods of alcohol interventions that will help you safely overcome your addiction to alcohol.
— Serenity Oaks (@Serenity_Oaks_) May 31, 2022