Alcohol Abuse - Get the Facts! | Illinois Poison Center 

Alcohol Abuse - Get the Facts!

Nov 29, 2020
Print This Page

What is binge drinking?

"Binge drinking" is heavy intermittent drinking in a short period of time.  It is usually defined as consuming five drinks or more in one sitting for men and four drinks or more in one sitting for women.  


What are the possible negative effects of binge drinking?  

Excessive drinking among college students is associated with a variety of negative consequences, including:

  • fatal and nonfatal injuries
  • alcohol poisoning
  • blackouts
  • academic failure
  • violence, including rape and assault
  • unintended pregnancy
  • sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS
  • property damage

What are the signs of alcohol poisoning?

Classic signs of alcohol poisoning are:

  • mental confusion, stupor or coma
  • vomiting
  • seizures
  • slow and/or irregular breathing
  • a dangerous decrease in body temperature, with possible bluish skin color and paleness  

What are the possible effects of alcohol poisoning?

Alcohol poisoning can have serious effects.  Victims of alcohol poisoning, when left untreated, can choke on, or breathe in their own vomit, which can result in a lack of oxygen.  This lack of oxygen can lead to irreversible brain damage and death.

Rapid binge drinking is especially dangerous because the victim can ingest a fatal dose of alcohol before becoming unconscious.  


What can be done if alcohol poisoning is suspected?

Illinois residents are encouraged to call the IPC at 1-800-222-1222 with questions or concerns regarding alcohol poisoning or alcohol intoxication for possible at-home treatment advice.  The service is free and confidential.   


IMPORTANT: If the person in question cannot walk, is comatose, or is very lethargic and vomiting, Call 911

Keywords: alcohol, alcohol poisoning, binge drinking,
Bookmark and Share