Get up to speed on intoxication

Alcohol

Alcohol is a legal substance for adults, and is available in many different drinks. However, drinking too much or at the wrong time can be harmful.

What are alcohol units?

Every type of drink (beer, wine, vodka, rum etc.) has a different level of alcohol. This means that in one glass different drinks can contain more or less alcohol. Therefore, one unit is not one glass.

A unit is a standard measure of the amount of alcohol in every drink, and it takes into account the strength of the drink (or the % vol that appears on the labels) and the quantity of the drink.

In practical terms, one unit is the equivalent to 8g or 10ml of alcohol and can be found in:

  • Half a pint of lager, cider, beer with 3.5% vol.
  • One 125ml glass of wine with 8% vol.
  • One 50ml glass of sherry or port with 20% vol.
  • One single measure (25ml) of spirits (whisky, brandy, vodka, etc.) with 40% vol.

And it takes ONE hour for ONE unit to be cleared from the body!

Daily benchmarks for sensible drinking

Remember

  • Alcohol and some drugs/medicines do not mix well. This includes the contraceptive pill and antibiotics. So, if you are taking any medication ensure you read the label carefully.
  • Certain medical conditions are also affected by alcohol, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Alcohol is a depressant! There’s no need to drink if you feel low… You end up feeling even worse!
  • Sexual transmitted infections and alcohol are highly related. People who are drunk are less aware of many risks including forgetting to use condoms.

Want to quit?

  • Look at the daily benchmark. Set yourself a limit!
  • Pace your drinks, sip them slowly and choose lower strength drinks
  • Cut the pressure! Don’t let people pressurise you into drinking. Think of an answer such as “I’ve got a lot on tomorrow!” or simply “No, thanks!” and stick to it!
  • If you drink to relax or unwind, think of alternatives that might make you feel good! Exercise, a walk, swimming, a movie, a trip.

More Information can be found on:

  • DRINKLINE 0800 917 8232 (FREE)
  • ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS 0845 769 7555
  • www.alcoholics-anonymous.org.uk
  • AL-ANON FAMILY GROUPS 020 7403 0888
  • NHS DIRECT 0845 46 47

Illegal Drugs

The effects of drug taking can vary from one person to another. However drug taking damages vital body functions and is often highly addictive. People take different drugs for different purposes. There are five main groups:

• Stimulants

These act on the central nervous system and increase the activity of the brain.

Cocaine, Crack, Ecstasy, Poppers, Speed, Tobacco

• Depressants

These slow down the brain activity.

Alcohol, Gases, Glues, Aerosols, GHB, Tranquilisers

• Hallucinogens

These act on the mind, distorting the way users see and hear.

Cannabis, Ketamine, LSD, Magic Mushrooms

• Analgesics

These reduce the pain/act as painkiller.

Heroin

• Anabolic Steroids

These promote the growth of muscle and increase body mass.

Sustanon 250, Dea-Durabolin, Dianabol, Anavar, Stanozol

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