Alcohol is a toxic and psychoactive substance with dependence producing properties. In many of today’s societies, alcoholic beverages are a routine part of the social landscape for many in the population. This is particularly true for those in social environments with high visibility and societal inﬂuence, nationally and internationally, where alcohol frequently accompanies socializing. In this context, it is easy to overlook or discount the health and social damage caused or contributed to by drinking.
Alcohol consumption contributes to 3 million deaths each year globally as well as to the disabilities and poor health of millions of people. Overall, harmful use of alcohol is responsible for 5.1% of the global burden of disease.
Symptoms: Intoxication, slurred speech, unsteady walk, relaxation, relaxed inhibitions, slowed reflexes, impaired coordination. Look for: Smell of alcohol on clothes or breath, intoxicated behavior, hangover, glazed eyes.
Impaired driving ability, reduces coordination and reflex action, impaired vision and judgement, lowers inhibitions. Dangers: neglect of diet, amnesia, risk of miscarriage and premature birth, weakens and decreases pumping action of heart, liver problems, related factor in child abuse, crime and murder, brain cell damage. 60% of all auto fatalities involve a driver who has been drinking. Overdose when mixed with other depressants.