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Reasons to Avoid Binge Drinking

Young man drinking a beer in a glass mug.

Binge drinking is consuming a large quantity of alcohol in a short amount of time.

The precise amount of alcohol necessary to constitute binge drinking varies a little depending on what is consumed and the size and gender of the person consuming it. Typically, it involves men consuming five or more drinks in a two-hour period, or women consuming four or more drinks in a two-hour period.

Most people who binge drink are not addicted to alcohol, though teen binge drinking can predispose a person to develop alcoholism later in life. Unfortunately, binge drinking is most common in young adults ages 18 to 34. It is twice as common in men as in women and often takes place among college students. Unfortunately, teen binge drinking can be deadly or lead to serious disruption of life. Here are five great reasons not to binge drink.

1. So You Can Avoid Serious Medical Consequences

Alcohol poisoning is an obvious medical consequence of binge drinking, but so are car crashes, falls, and other types of accidents. Long-term chronic diseases based on alcoholism often have their seeds planted through binge drinking and may include cancer of the mouth, breast, esophagus, throat, colon, and liver. The medical consequences of chronic alcohol dependence can also originate with teen binge drinking.

2. So You Can Avoid Serious Legal Consequences

Violence is too often a consequence of binge drinking, and sometimes the violence is severe. Homicides, suicides, domestic violence, and sexual assault can follow from binge drinking. Of course, driving under the influence can wreak serious havoc, even if no one is hurt, because of stiff legal consequences. Underage drinking can result in legal consequences that carry over into family and educational life and cause long-term upheaval.

3. So You Can Avoid Serious Sexual Consequences

Binge drinking can call consent into question altogether, and it can cloud judgment, causing people to have unsafe sexual encounters. This raises the risk of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies. If binge drinking is continued during a pregnancy, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders can result. Furthermore, pregnancies in binge drinkers are likelier to have worse outcomes, including miscarriage and stillbirth.

4. So Your Brain Will Be Healthier

Perhaps not surprisingly, binge drinkers report less in the way of positive moods than do non-binge drinkers. Reducing or eliminating binge drinking altogether can improve symptoms of anxiety and depression. Studies in women have found that the ability to perform working memory tasks improves in those who stop binge drinking. People who take medications for anxiety or depression are often advised not to drink, due to potentially dangerous interactions between alcohol and the medications.

5. So Your Wallet Will Be Healthier

The costs of drinking add up fast, even if you never suffer a legal or medical consequence for it. Not only does drinking end up taking a lot of money out of your paycheck, it can cause you to miss more days of work or school. When drinking results in injury or illness, the medical costs add up quickly, and if you are arrested on a drinking-related legal charge, you may be amazed at how much the various fines, fees, and higher insurance premiums cost you.

Sometimes binge drinking feels good in the moment, but even that is not guaranteed. One way and the other, binge drinking is more hassle than it is worth. It can cost you in terms of your health, your legal standing, and your reputation, and it can drain your bank account quicker than you think. If you have questions about your teen’s binge drinking or alcohol dependence, we encourage you to contact us at any time. Help for teen alcohol abuse is available at our teen-specific rehab center.

Medical Disclaimer: Next Generation Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options, and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.

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