Many people enjoy a drink because it helps them to feel more relaxed, less shy and more confident. Some people use it to block out upsetting thoughts or feelings, or sometimes just so that they feel like they can ‘fit in’.
In small doses, you will become relaxed and more confident and sociable. In high doses, you will become drunk and uninhibited.
In the short-term effects include loss of balance and coordination, risk taking, memory blackouts or even alcohol poisoning (coma, choking on vomit). In the long-term; drinking more to get the same effect, psychological and physical dependence, physical health damage (e.g. cancers, liver damage, high blood pressure) and mental health problems (eg: depression, anxiety, insomnia, memory loss).
Current government guidelines recommend that men drink no more than 3 to 4 units daily, and women no more than 2 to 3 units daily.
Tips for safe usage:
- Plan alternatives to replace the good things about your drinking.
- Reduce how much you drink before you go out.
- Choose lower strength (abv %) drinks or pour smaller measures at home.
- Choose Best Bar None Venues for safer nights out.
- Avoid caffeinated mixers and pace your drinks.
- Spend time with friends and family who will support you.
- Try to alternate alcoholic drinks with soft drinks.
Useful websites and contact details
www.drinkaware.co.uk for an online unit check and safer drinking tips.
Visit www.downyourdrink.org.uk for a 6 week online self help course.
In Manchester you can sign up for a think safe drink safe card which gives offers on alcohol free drinks at selected venues.
Drinkline is a 24 hour support helpline for alcohol related issues and problems - you can call them on 0800 917 8282.
You can also contact the LGF Helpline 0845 3 30 30 30 for some advice. It is open 6 to 10pm daily or has an automated service between 10pmand 6pm. You can also email via firstname.lastname@example.org.