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What Counts as Binge Drinking?

What Counts as Binge Drinking?

Binge drinking is often associated with frat parties or irresponsible young adults

Holidays, celebrations and social events are often connected to or associated with drinking too much. Most Louisville residents are aware of the immediate effects of drinking too much, but they may not be aware of just how often their drinking would be considered binge drinking. Learn about the long-term consequences that come with behaviors as seemingly harmless as having a few drinks with friends or coworkers at a bar or pouring a few drinks at home to have with dinner.

How Much Alcohol Is Involved in a Binge?

The most well known definition considers binge drinking to be consuming five or more drinks for men, or four or more drinks for women, within a two-hour time span. However this does not take into account variations in body size or individual metabolisms, and a more precise, although harder to measure definition of binge drinking is raising one’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level to over 0.08 grams percent. While this usually requires five or fewer drinks, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that the average binge involves eight drinks (“Fact Sheets: Binge Drinking,” January 2014).

What Counts as a Drink?

While the binge-drinking definition of four to five drinks may seem simple to calculate and keep track of, one glass does not always equal one drink. 1.5ml of hard liquor is considered a drink, yet mixed drinks typically have multiple shots, often making them the equivalent of 3 or more drinks. A 12 oz. can of beer with 5% alcohol is considered a drink, yet craft beers often contain 8-10% alcohol and come in glasses that hold more than the traditional 12 oz. One beer at a brewery can be the equivalent of several drinks. The alcohol content of a single glass of beer, wine or a mixed drink is rarely just the equivalent of one drink, and Louisville consumers should be aware of just how much alcohol they are drinking.

Who Binge Drinks?

Binge drinking is often associated with frat parties or irresponsible young adults, yet, “70% of binge drinking episodes involve adults age 26 years and older” (CDC). This means individuals of all ages are at risk for the consequences of binge drinking, such as increased risk of injuries, accidents and liver disease and an increased likelihood of dependence and addiction.

Ending Binge Drinking

If you or a loved one in Louisville is drinking regularly, to excess, for unhealthy reasons or in unhealthy patterns, don’t wait to get help. Alcoholism is a chronic disease that only gets worse if left untreated, but negative drinking habits can be reversed with therapy, treatment and individualized care. Call our toll-free helpline to learn more about ending the dangers and consequences of alcohol abuse. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to help you find an alcohol-free life today; call now.

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