Just Drunk Once? 3 Risks Incurred by a Single Intoxication Experience

Many people underestimate the risks of a single intoxication experience.  They say to themselves, “I’ll just get wicked drunk this once.”   In the medical community, this experience is known as “Acute Alcohol Intoxication.”

While lay people joke and assume that there can be no real harm in a single night of binge drinking and intoxication,  it is wise to know what the medical textbooks say before drawing these conclusions.  Reading “Nursing Diagnosis Handbook, 10th Edition”, authors Betty Ackley and Gail Ladwig discuss the risks that can be incurred through Acute Alcohol Intoxication.

Consider these 3 risks given as possible complications from a single intoxication experience:

  • Ineffective breathing pattern ,  related to depression of the respiratory center from excessive alcohol intake
  • Acute confusion , related to central nervous system depression
  • Risk for aspiration (a condition in which food, liquids, saliva, or vomit is breathed into the airways), related to depressed reflexes or acute vomiting

(Page 20,  Nursing Diagnosis Handbook, 10th edition, , Copyright 2014 by Mosby, an imprint of Elsevier Inc.)