There could easily be a novel written on all the different “rules” you need to know before you go out for a night drinking with friends. But how many of these things are true? Here are 6 myths you can cross off (or in some cases, add to) your list of concerns when it’s time for the next night out.
1. Drinking coffee, having a cold shower, throwing up etc will sober you up.
There’s a million different myths about what will help you sober up quickly. The reality? There is no way to speed up the process. Sobering up takes time and only time will do the trick. It’s also worth noting that drinking caffeine will actually make you feel more dehydrated and therefore worse.
2. Mixing alcohol with energy drinks gets you more drunk
Mixing your vodka with Red Bull is obviously dangerous. However if you’re doing it so that you will get intoxicated with less alcohol consumption, think again. Mixing alcohol with energy drinks does not get you more drunk. The reality of why you may feel more intoxicated is that the caffeine in the energy drinks make you feel more awake than you typically would from just drinking alcohol. This may cause you to do more crazy things that you would normally do. It also may cause you to consume more alcohol than you normally would giving you the illusion that the energy drink mixture made you more intoxicated.
3. Drinking kills your brain cells.
I’m sure at some point in your life, someone has told you that alcohol kills brain cells. Well, it’s my pleasure to inform you that this is simply not true. Moderate alcohol use is really nothing to be concerned about in terms of brain health. That being said, heavy alcohol use can damage your brain. However, it is not due to brain cells dying. I think we all know what this means, you can party on Friday nights while still passing your finals and remembering where you left your car keys. You really can have your cake and eat it too.
4. Blacking Out is No Big Deal.
Quite a few people have had the unfortunate, confusing experience of waking up and not knowing how they got there or what happened the nigh before. In fact, it’s so prevalent in our culture that it’s easy to feel like it’s “no big deal”. However, the reality is that over consuming alcohol to this point can often mean alcohol poisoning because your blood alcohol level will continue increasing while you’re passed out and unable to respond.
5. NO MIXING! “Beer after wine, feeling fine”/”Liquor before beer, you’re in the clear”
Ah, you’ve just turned 19 (21 for the American readers) and you’re ready for your first night out. The advice comes pouring in and the number one piece? “Don’t mix your drinks!” The myth is that if you mix different kinds of alcohol or if you don’t drink your beer/wine/liquor in a particular order, you’ll get more intoxicated or have a worse hangover. This is not true! Your intoxication and subsequent hangover is simply about your blood alcohol level. Possible explanations to this idea is that when you’re mixing drinks, you lose perspective on the alcohol content in each drink and therefore end up drinking more actual alcohol than you may have intended or would have if you stuck to one variety of drink. If you’re more intoxicated, it’s because you drank more actual alcohol, not because you had that Tequila shot after a beer.
6. Eating before drinking will keep you sober.
Before you order that plate of fries with your friends to kick off a night of drinking, you should know that eating before drinking will not keep you sober or allow to handle more alcohol. Eating a big meal before drinking will delay the time it takes for the alcohol to get into your system, but it’s inevitably still going to happen. So if you drink a lot, you will still get drunk.
So there you have it, six myths about drinking debunked. Whether you’re an occasional drinker or love to party, it’s important to be as educated as possible about alcohol in order to have a fun but safe experience. Knowing your limits, what works, what doesn’t, and what’s dangerous, keeps you in control of your own body and mind.
Here’s to hopes for no embarrassing drunk photos on Facebook this weekend!
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