The Effects of Binge Drinking On Teenagers
Teenagers are more susceptible to drug addiction because their brains are not fully developed. In modern society, teenagers are starting to use drugs as early as 12 years old. Studies show that most teenagers between the ages of 12 to 20 years old, both boys and girls, have tried alcohol (note: alcohol is considered a drug). Additionally, teenagers are more likely to become addicted to drugs because the part of the brain that experiences pleasure matures faster than the part that makes logical and reasonable decisions.
This drug usage, mostly alcohol, is common to teenagers because a culture has developed in which some young people believe that they cannot have fun without using drugs. The use of alcohol by teenagers can include binge drinking. Binge drinking has various meanings to different types of people.
The aim of binge drinking is to become drunk and thus involves heavy drinking.
Binge drinking is drinking with the aim of getting drunk. This means more than five drinks for boys and more than four for girls. Binge drinking can be drinking occasionally and heavily, for example during parties. It can also mean drinking responsibly but often having more than just a few. For instance, drinking responsibly during the week but overindulging during the weekends. Binge drinking is harmful to your body, relationships, and social life. In this article, we will look at the effects of binge drinking on teenagers.
Factors That Affect Binge Drinking Behavior:
Let’s briefly look at the factors that contribute to the development of drinking problems.
Ethnicity and race – Some races or ethnic communities are at a greater risk of developing alcohol addiction, such as Native Alaskans and Native Americans.
Mental health disorders – Examples are depression or anxiety.
Genetics – If a family member consumes alcohol, then you are more likely to indulge in drinking than someone without a family history of alcohol use.
Peer pressure – If your friends drink alcohol, then you are at a higher risk of being influenced to drink as well.
Genetics plays a role in the likelihood of alcohol use and abuse.
Personality – If you believe that you are better at socializing while drunk than when sober, you will be more likely to drink.
Gender – Boys tend to drink more often, but girls can become addicted more quickly.
Effects of binge drinking
Studies show that more than 40% of teenagers have engaged in binge drinking at least once in their lifetime. However, this behavior does not come without a price. In addition to the risk of nausea and vomiting, having a hangover, blacking out (completely forgetting stretches of time), or being unable to engage in normal activities (e.g. school), the following activities demonstrate some short- and long-term dangers of binge drinking.
Fatal road accidents – Most fatal road crashes involving teenagers occur when they are drunk. Autopsies from such accidents often reveal high blood alcohol content.
Drinking and driving causes traffic accidents.
Long-term brain damage – Some teenagers who binge drink develop brain disorders in adulthood. These disorders include addiction, anxiety, memory loss, and poor coordination. This is because the brain is still developing during the teenage years and alcohol can hinder healthy brain development.
Irresponsible sexual behavior – Drunken teenagers sometimes engage in irresponsible sexual activities: they may not use condoms, which can lead to unwanted pregnancies or sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, and even HIV. Consent is difficult to give when inebriated, a situation which could lead to confusion, sexual assault, or even rape.
Injuries – Injuries may result not only from driving under the influence, but also due to violence.
Loss of items – In the confusion caused by drunkenness, items such as jewelry, wallets, purses, keys, and phones can be lost.
Injuries and loss of items are two of the possible effects of binge drinking.
Long-term alcohol-related problems – These include liver damage (cirrhosis), stomach ulcers, weight, or sexual problems. Such issues can also lead to depression.
The blood pressure of a person with alcohol poisoning may be very low.
Alcohol poisoning is the result of an alcohol overdose. It can cause some bodily functions, including breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure, to severely slow, leading to a loss of consciousness. This is a serious reaction that could lead to death if not treated. A person with alcohol poisoning must be seen by a doctor immediately.
Recognition and treatment of alcohol poisoning
Aside from losing consciousness, alcohol poisoning can be characterized by a slow breathing rate (fewer than eight per minute); skin that is cold, pale, or bluish; and a strong alcohol odor on the breath and skin.
When you recognize these signs, call an ambulance immediately, gently turn the person on their left side so that they do not choke if they vomit, don’t let the person sleep, and most importantly watch them until help arrives.