The Signs & Symptoms of Alcohol Poisoning

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What Are the Symptoms of Alcohol Poisoning?

Alcohol poisoning is a serious and potentially lethal result from drinking a lot of alcohol in a short amount of time. While young adults and college students are more likely to become the victims of alcohol poisoning, an alcohol overdose can happen to anyone who drinks too much too quickly. Before enjoying an event that includes alcoholic beverages, it is vital to know the answers to the crucial question: “What are the symptoms of alcohol poisoning?”

Signs and Symptoms of Alcohol Poisoning

It can be challenging to gauge whether a person’s state of inebriation is at the level of alcohol poisoning, so it is always better to err on the side of caution. At a minimum, you should keep someone under constant observation if they are suffering any of these signs and symptoms of alcohol poisoning:

  • Confusion
  • Loss of coordination
  • Vomiting
  • Slow breathing
  • Gaps in breathing
  • Blue tinge to lips or skin
  • Drop in body temperature
  • Unconsciousness

NOTE: THIS IS NOT A CHECKLIST. An individual does not need to have all of these signs to be at a poisoning level. If there is ANY uncertainty at all, seek medical attention immediately.

Use BAC Charts Carefully

The BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) wheels or charts can be a good resource. Based on your body weight and gender, they can give you a good indication of your level of intoxication for both driving under the influence AND for alcohol poisoning.

But other factors can affect your state of drunkenness, including:

  • Stomach Contents
  • Tolerance
  • Genetics
  • Ethnicity
  • Level of Hydration
  • Emotional State
  • Drug Interaction

Alcohol Poisoning Situations and Statistics

More than 2,200 lives are lost each year due to alcohol poisoning. While middle-aged men seem to make up the largest demographic, it also often occurs with young inexperienced drinkers.

People just turning the legal drinking age “celebrate” by doing shots and sometimes they don’t let their intoxication catch up with their ingestion. Their BAC will spike before they understand how much they have poisoned themselves.

How You Can Help an Alcohol-Poisoned Person

Stay with the person and keep them under observation. We cannot stress this enough. Never let someone you suspect has alcohol poison to leave the bar/home/event under any circumstances. Steps you can take to aid in the process include:

  • Contacting 9-1-1 or medical professionals immediately.
  • Keep them sitting upright. Prop them with pillows if needed.
  • Keep them talking if you can.
  • Try to hydrate them with sips of water or electrolyte beverages like Gatorade.
  • Control their temperature with a blanket.
  • If they are in a prone position, keep them on their side in case vomiting should occur.

If you were with them when it happened, note what the person was drinking, how much, and what duration.

What You Can Do to Prevent Alcohol Poisoning

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. If you are concerned about your consumption of alcohol, or that of a loved one, Summit Malibu is ready to help you beat the abuse. We have various treatment services, and our in-house residential treatment can change your life. Contact us today to get more information and start your new journey.