Everything in Moderation, Especially Alcohol!
Sometimes, the old adage of “everything in moderation” is easier said than done! Like most people, you’ve probably had a moment or two of overindulgence in your life. Maybe you soaked up the sun at the beach for a little too long, ate one too many cookies, or kept hitting “next episode” on your favorite show until your eyes were sore. When you overdo it, it might lead to temporary discomfort or unhealthy lifestyle patterns, but one Netflix or candy binge generally isn’t going to be fatal.
However, there are some things that are dangerous or even fatal when used in excess. And one of these substances is something that is incredibly popular in American culture: alcohol.
Alcohol Use in the United States
According to a 2018 survey, more than 60% of men and 45% of women reported drinking within the last month. For many of these adults, drinking likely involves responsible behavior, like enjoying a beer at a sporting event where a friend is the designated driver. When people are of legal drinking age and have a responsible plan in place, having an occasional drink does not have to be a hazard to their health and the safety of others.
But for others, their drinking behavior is unhealthy and excessive. Of those who reported alcohol use, 23% of men and 12% of women report binge drinking, or drinking large quantities in a short time. This kind of behavior leads to an array of health concerns, but one of the biggest threats is alcohol poisoning.
What is Alcohol Poisoning?
Alcohol poisoning is a serious illness that results from drinking too much alcohol in a short amount of time. How much is “too much” depends on factors like weight, drinking experience, and health background. For example, a large man with an alcohol addiction might have two drinks and not feel any affect. At the same time, a young, petite woman who rarely drinks could feel ill after the same two drinks.
Regardless of these factors, anyone can suffer from alcohol poisoning if they consume too much alcohol. When someone is suffering from alcohol poisoning, they might exhibit symptoms such as:
- Slow or irregular breathing
- Pale or blue-tinged skin
- Low body temperature
- Passing out
Alcohol poisoning is a medical emergency. Six people die every day as a result of alcohol poisoning, with a total of around 2,200 deaths every year. Many alcohol-related deaths are the result of choking, often when an unconscious person chokes on their own vomit. Excessive alcohol can also lead to shutdowns of critical areas of the body.
When someone is showing signs of alcohol poisoning, they need immediate medical attention. Unfortunately, many people do not get help, as others around them might dismiss their symptoms or not want to call 911 if they have also been drinking. For underage drinkers in particular, not wanting to seek help is an especially prominent issue.
Liability for Alcohol Poisoning
If someone dies as a result of excessive alcohol use, liability can be a complex issue. If the person made their own decision to binge drink, does the blame fall on them?
While drinking is a personal choice, other factors do play a role. For example, if a bar continued to serve a patron who was clearly intoxicated, the bar could be partially liable for any resulting harm. Similarly, if the victim is underage and the alcohol poisoning occurred at a house party, the owners of the house might be liable. This is especially true if they were adults who supplied the alcohol.
When people excessively drink, it can lead to problems for everyone. From DUI accidents to alcohol poisoning, they are so many complications that can arise from overdoing it, which is why when it comes to alcohol, moderation—or not drinking at all!—is important to keep everyone safe.
The attorneys at Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes represent those involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other types of personal injury matters. Our firm is one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Tampa Bay. There are no attorneys’ fees or costs unless we prevail for you. Call our office 24 hours a day at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.