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dl_what_is_a_unit

Check out the Drinkaware unit calculator

DRiNKLiNK has no affiliation with this site but we found it in our research and thought it may be helpful 🙂

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If you regularly drink more than 14 units a week, try these simple tips to help you cut down. You may need to consult a doctor if you drink excessively.

recomended_units

Make a plan

Before you start drinking, set a limit on how much you’re going to drink.

Set a budget

Only take a fixed amount of money to spend on alcohol.

Let them know


If you let your friends and family know you’re cutting down and that it’s important to you, you could get support from them.

Take it a day at a time

Cut back a little each day. That way, every day you do is a success.

Make it a smaller one

You can still enjoy a drink but go for smaller sizes. Try bottled beer instead of pints, or a small glass of wine instead of a large one.

Have a lower-strength drink

Cut down the alcohol by swapping strong beers or wines for ones with a lower strength (ABV in %). You’ll find this information on the bottle.

Stay hydrated

Drink a pint of water before you start drinking, and don’t use alcohol to quench your thirst. Have a soft drink instead.

Take a break

Have several drink-free days each week.

Check out the Drinkaware unit calculator

DRiNKLiNK has no affiliation with this site but we found it in our research and thought it may be helpful 🙂

 Short term

The NHS has published some short-term and long-term risks of alcohol misuse.

Short-term risks could include:

  • Accidents and injuries requiring hospital treatment, such as a head injury
  • Violent behaviour and being a victim of violence
  • Unprotected sex that could potentially lead to unplanned pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  • Loss of personal possessions, such as wallets, keys or mobile phones
  • Alcohol poisoning– this may lead to vomiting, seizures (fits) and falling unconscious[1]

Long-term:

 Persistent alcohol misuse increases your risk of serious health conditions, including:

  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Liver disease
  • Liver cancer and bowel cancer
  • Mouth cancer
  • Pancreatitis

As well as causing serious health problems, long-term alcohol misuse can lead to social problems, such as unemployment, divorce, domestic abuse and homelessness[2].


Alcohol and memory

Soon after drinking alcohol, your brain processes slow down and your memory can be impaired. After large quantities of alcohol, the brain can stop recording into the ‘memory store’.

That’s why you can wake up the next day with a ‘blank’ about what you said or did and even where you were. This short-term memory failure or ‘black out’ doesn’t mean that brain cells have been damaged, but frequent heavy sessions can damage the brain because of alcohol’s effect on brain chemistry and processes.

Drinking heavily over a long period of time can also have long-term effects on memory. Even on days when you don’t drink any alcohol, recalling what you did yesterday, or even where you have been earlier that day, become difficult.


Check out the Drinkaware unit calculator

DRiNKLiNK has no affiliation with this site but we found it in our research and thought it may be helpful 🙂

Sources:
[1] http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Alcohol-misuse/Pages/Introduction.aspx
[2] http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Alcohol-misuse/Pages/Introduction.aspx

Let’s …

… have a social drink? … get a bit boozy? … get smashed?

Whatever you call it, the effect of alcohol on the body is the same.


How much does it take to get drunk?

Did you know your type of drunk is based more on Blood Alcohol Concentrations rather than personality type?

  men_drunkwhat_kind_ofwomen_drunk

Check out the Drinkaware unit calculator

DRiNKLiNK has no affiliation with this site but we found it in our research and thought it may be helpful 🙂

 

 

what_is_a_hangover

Hangover cure = myth

We are sorry to disappoint you but there are no proven cures for a hangover! It’s all about prevention.


During a session:

NHS top tips. If you choose to drink:

  • Limit the amount of alcohol you drink in a single session
  • Drink slowly
  • Drink with food
  • Alternate with water or non-alcoholic drinks
  • Drink lots of water before you go to bed to stay hydrated

Hair of the dog

NHS call the “hair of the dog” a risky habit. It claims more alcohol merely delays the symptoms of the hangover but may in itself cause another one.


Binge Drinking

Binge drinking usually refers to drinking lots of alcohol in a short space of time or drinking to get drunk. Researchers define binge drinking as consuming 8 or more units in a single session for men and 6 or more for women. However, this definition does not apply to everyone because the tolerance and the speed of drinking in a session varies from person to person.

The stats

In 2014/2015, one in ten (10%) adults exhibited two or more symptoms of depression, indicating moderate to high severity. This level is similar to that reported in the previous survey periods of 2008/2009 (8%), 2011/2012 (8%) and 2012/2013 (9%). The proportion of adults reporting one or more symptoms of depression in 2014/2015 (20%) was significantly higher than the proportion in both 2012/2013 (17%) and 2008/2009 (14%).

The proportion of those with two or more symptoms of depression rose significantly between 2008/2009 and 2014/2015 for men (7% to 10%) but not women (10% in both survey periods). Significant increases were seen in the proportion of both men and women with one or more symptoms (11% to 19% for men, 16% to 21% for women).


 The cycle

 Alcohol is linked to suicide, self-harm and psychosis.

Alcohol can actually increase anxiety and stress rather than reduce it.

The proportion of adults with at least one symptom of anxiety rose from 21% in 2012/2013 to 24% in 2014/2015.

The proportion of adults with two or more symptoms of anxiety, indicating moderate to severe levels of anxiety, showed an increase from 9% in 2008/2009 to 2012/2013 to 12% in 2014/2015. Women were significantly more likely than men to exhibit two or more signs of anxiety (15% compared to 9%).

dl_the_cycle

In action

Ever wondered why can people become aggressive?

Because of the reduced levels of Serotonin our perception of a situation narrows, putting the spotlight on the threat in the environment that cuts out the neutral information.

For example, Our partner talking to an attractive man at the bar. You may fail to see that it is actually the barman and that he is talking to others.

Does this give meaning to the word blind drunk?


Chicken before the egg

 Some drink to relieve the pressures of anxiety and depression.

Others drink to relieve the anxiety and pressure caused from drinking.


Warning signs

 If you use drink to try and improve your mood or mask your depression, you may be starting a vicious cycle…warning signs that alcohol is affecting your mood include:

  • Poor sleep after drinking
  • Feeling tired because of a hangover
  • Low mood
  • Experiencing anxiety in situations where you would normally feel comfortable.

Four ways to help prevent alcohol affecting your mood:

  • Use exercise and relaxation to tackle stress instead of alcohol.
  • Learn breathing techniques to try when you feel anxious.
  • Talk to someone about your worries. Don’t try and mask them with alcohol.
  • Always be aware of why you’re drinking. Don’t assume it will make a bad feeling go away, it’s more likely to exaggerate it.

Symptoms of depression in 2012-2015 (combined), by age and sex, and by area deprivation

new_graph5

Those in the most deprived areas were 4 times more likely than those in the least deprived areas to report two symptoms of depression (16% compared with 4%), using age-standardised data. Comparable patterns of prevalence of two or more symptoms of depression increasing with deprivation were seen for both men (18% in the most deprived quintile compared with 6% in the two least deprived quintiles) and women (15% in the most deprived compared with 3% in the least deprived).


Self harm

Alcohol can make people lose their inhibitions and behave impulsively, so it can lead to actions they might not otherwise have taken – including self-harm and suicide[4].

According to the NHS in Scotland, more than half of people who ended up in hospital because they’d deliberately injured themselves said they’ve drunk alcohol immediately before or while doing it.  27% of men and 19% of women gave alcohol as the reason for self-harming [5]

Extreme levels of drinking (such as more than 30 units per day for several weeks) can occasionally cause ‘psychosis’. It’s a severe mental illness where hallucinations and delusions of persecution develop. Psychotic symptoms can also occur when very heavy drinkers suddenly stop drinking and develop a condition known as ‘delirium tremens’ – symptoms include body tremors and confusion[6].


Sources:
[3] https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/alcohol-facts/health-effects-of-alcohol/mental-health/alcohol-and-mental-health/
[4] http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/alcoholdepression.aspx
[5] NHS Quality improvement Scotland, Understanding alcohol misuse in Scotland: Harmful drinking three – alcohol and self-harm’ 2007. Available at: http://bit.ly/TbBYAX
[6] https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/alcohol-facts/health-effects-of-alcohol/mental-health/alcohol-and-mental-health/

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