Shoreline Sober Living, San Diego, CA
Alcohol impairment chart

Alcohol affects individuals differently depending on a variety of factors which can include:

  • Age
  • Physical condition
  • Amount of food you have consumed that day
  • Gender
  • Any medication you may have taken
  • Body fat percentage

Furthermore, depending on the type of drink you are consuming will have an additional effect due to the different levels of alcohol within beverages. . Tolerance levels to alcohol varies from person to person. An amount of alcohol that might make you completely blackout may only make your friend mildly drunk; several factors are involved.

Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is the current amount of alcohol within your bloodstream when tested, most likely by a medic or a police officer. Blood alcohol concentration is expressed as the weight of ethanol in grams in 100 millilitres of blood, or if your breath is tested, you would be 210 litres. If you are being tested for your BAC, there are several ways you may be asked to take a test depending on the type of environment you are in. This can be:

  • Breath test
  • Blood test
  • Urination test

BAC effects

As stated before, alcohol affects individuals differently depending on several factors; however, there is a general chart for what the majority of people will begin to feel depending on their BAC levels. For example:

BAC Level 0.020-0.039%

Individuals will begin to experience a slight euphoric feeling. Anyone who is more of an introvert or experiences shyness will start to become slightly louder and more playful. Individuals will start to feel calmer within their environment and themselves.

BAC Level 0.040-0.059%

At this stage, your inhibitions will begin to lower, and you will be in full relaxation mode. Depending on the person, there may be some minor impairment of judgment, memory, and a decrease in caution.

BAC Level 0.06-0.099%

Balance, vision, reaction time, hearing, and speech will all begin to become slightly impaired; there will be a significant reduction in self-control, reasoning, and memory.

BAC Level 0.100-0.129%

At this stage in a social drinking environment, no one should be getting into a vehicle to drive themselves home. There will now be significant impairment of coordination and a complete loss of judgment.

The speech now begins to slur whenever the individual speaks, as well as a decrease in balance. The euphoric feeling that was first felt will now slowly turn into an intense feeling of unwellness

Within a drinking session, we would advise that individuals begin to stop or significantly slow down at this point. Ask for some water and relax.

BAC Level 0.160-0.199%

Nausea will begin to arise, and the individual can be seen to be completely drunk. They will be falling over; their eyes will look straight through you. Their behavior is now recognized as being drunk.

No more drinks should be consumed at this point apart from water.

BAC Level 0.200-0.249%

This is a hazardous point of BAC level to be at. The individual will most likely need assistance to hold themselves upright and walk. There is a significant increase of the individual blacking out at this point.

BAC Level 0.250-0.399%

At this point, the likelihood of the individual still being conscious is extremely rare. An individual with this level of BAC would need to be taken to their nearest emergency center as they will most likely be suffering from alcohol poisoning, which is extremely dangerous and at times life-threatening.

BAC Level 0.40%+

Suppose an individual manages to reach this level of BAC. In that case, they will most likely be placed into a coma with a highly significant risk of having either organ failure or respiratory arrest, which increases the risk of death.

Learn when to stop

Going out for a social drink is always a fun activity with friends and family. However, if you are going out with the intention of blacking out or find yourself unable to stop drinking, then we would highly advise you to check into your local rehabilitation center for a check-up.

If you are worried about yourself or a loved one developing a drinking problem, please ring up and speak to a member of our team so we can get you the help you need immediately.

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