What are the Symptoms of Alcohol Intoxication?

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  • Written By: Dan Cavallari
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 26 September 2019
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When consumed in large quantities in relation to the size of the person, alcohol enters the bloodstream and causes alcohol intoxication. Indicators of alcohol intoxication can sometimes be difficult to spot, as not everyone who drinks alcohol will exhibit any outward signs of intoxication. Most people do show some signs of alcohol intoxication, however, and they may included slurred speech, decreased motor skills, sleepiness, becoming excited or hyper, becoming violent, becoming excessively jovial or friendly, becoming dizzy, or passing out. Generally speaking, most people exhibiting signs of alcohol intoxication will either become excessively friendly or depressed or violent; some people may exhibit signs of both, but this is less common.

Erratic behavior is a good indicator of alcohol intoxication. If a person is exhibiting characteristics uncommon to his or her personality, he or she may be intoxicated. Usually one sign of intoxication is not enough to completely indicate that a person is drunk, but if two or more signs are present, intoxication is a strong possibility. Erratic behavior combined with slurred speech or decreased motor skills, for example, can indicate that a person is suffering from alcohol intoxication. A person may become overly excited, but this does not indicate alcohol intoxication on its own.


Physical indicators of intoxication will also be evident. One's eyes may become red and bloodshot; the skin may become pale, and one may begin to stumble or become clumsy. One may experience dry mouth and dehydration, which can cause headaches. A good indicator of alcohol intoxication in oneself is the sensation of vertigo, or feeling as though the room is spinning. This may lead to a loss of equilibrium, and the sufferer will feel the need to sit or lie down.

In more severe cases of intoxication, alcohol in the body can cause vomiting. This is the body's way of rejecting the alcohol and preventing it from entering the bloodstream. If vomiting persists, medical attention should be sought immediately, as alcohol poisoning may have occurred. In severe cases of intoxication, the sufferer is likely to black out, suffer temporary memory loss, or pass out completely. Once the ingestion of alcohol has ceased, the sufferer may experience a hangover, which is essentially caused by dehydration. Headaches and stomachaches are the most common complaints when experiencing a hangover, but lethargy is also common, as is the loss of appetite or the persistent feeling of vertigo.


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Post 2

In general, I think it can be kind of difficult to tell just how drunk anyone is, until they're staggering. Some people are so obnoxious when they're sober, that you just can't say with any certainty that they're really drunk, just because they're more obnoxious.

I think guys tend to start going after any girl they see. Hence, the origin of the song, "The Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time." I've had guys come on to me when they're drunk, but they wouldn't have given me the time of day when sober. It's kind of discouraging.

And sometimes people do stupid things and you wonder if they're drunk, but they're cold sober. They're just stupid.

Post 1

It really depends on the person. Some people are routinely happy drunks. Some people are fighting drunks, some are sappy, sad drunks. Some are a combination.

I had a friend who was one of those drunks who was sad until you said something to her. Then she wanted to fight you. She was also apt to have indiscriminate sex and then on more than one occasion, tried to accuse the guy of date rape.

I finally got tired of her crap and the stuff she did when she was drunk -- because she couldn't seem *not* to get drunk.

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