The dangers of drunk driving are revealed by the media every day, showing
us the tragic
accidents and astounding fatality statistics caused by intoxicated drivers. Everyone
is fully aware that driving under the influence of alcohol is reckless
and extremely dangerous, but how many people know exactly why? The way
in which your body processes or "metabolizes" alcohol explains
a great deal about how alcohol affects your driving and, therefore, why
it is so dangerous to drink and drive.
The Alcohol Metabolization Process
As soon as you swallow your first sip of an alcoholic beverage, some of
the alcohol begins to absorb through the lining of your stomach and small
intestine directly into your bloodstream, traveling to your heart and
head before cycling through to your liver. That is why the effects of
a strong drink can be almost immediate. Any alcohol that is not immediately
absorbed into the bloodstream then moves to your liver. Since alcohol
has no value to the body whatsoever, your liver begins to process it out
of your system; however, the liver cannot metabolize more than about one
ounce of alcohol in a single cycle. Therefore, the remainder is absorbed
into your bloodstream once again and travels to your heart.
Alcohol has an interesting effect on your heart by causing it to slow down.
This causes your blood pressure to drop, making you feel more relaxed.
It can also make you lightheaded due to the drop in blood pressure, though
this is usually not noticeable. What is noticeable is the dizziness that
occurs when the alcohol reaches your brain. Alcohol affects the neurotransmitters
in your brain that control your thought process, behavior, and emotions.
It "inhibits" these transmitters so that your reactions are
slower, your speech becomes slurred, and your mood begins to alter.
Next, the alcohol continues on to your lungs, where a small portion evaporates
and becomes evident on your breath. The amount of alcohol vapor in your
lungs is directly tied to the concentration of alcohol in your bloodstream.
This is what makes
breathalyzers so efficient. After this point, the alcohol in your bloodstream continues
moving through your body until it reaches your liver again, where even
more alcohol is metabolized. This process continues on until the alcohol
has been completely eliminated. This is why it takes about an hour for
one drink to wear off.
Arrested for DUI? Contact Parks & Braxton, PA.
Now that you know exactly what alcohol does to your body, you can understand
why it is dangerous to drive until the alcohol has worn off. Use that
knowledge to protect yourself and others by waiting to drive after drinking;
or even better, designate a driver. If you've been wrongfully accused
of drinking and driving, however, our firm has what it takes to help.
Parks & Braxton, PA has extensive experience in all areas of
penalties for drunk driving are severe, including license suspension and possible jail time, so make
sure that you have the aggressive representation of a Fort Lauderdale
DUI attorney on your side. Our firm has an AV Preeminent® rating from
Martindale-Hubbell® and has successfully defended thousands of criminal
cases. Call our offices at your earliest convenience to speak directly
with a lawyer.
Your initial case evaluation is absolutely free, so don't wait.
Contact our firm today for the help you need.