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The Science of Getting Drunk

It might seem hard to believe, but getting drunk is a science. There’s a slew of changes that the body endures from the time you take the first sip, until the time you’re passed out on the living room couch. Let’s take a look at how drinkers arrive at their final destination, and what it takes to get them there.


Several areas of the brain are triggered when alcohol hits the bloodstream. The cerebral cortex slows down and lowers your inhibitions, the cerebellum is affected and causes you to stagger and sway, and the medulla kicks in and causes sleepiness and can even lower breathing and body temperature. All of these chemical activities create what we would call the standard drunk; quick to say yes to anything, falling all over the place, and dozing off to sleep at the drop of a dime.


It can be pretty entertaining to watch an intoxicated person wobble around like a toddler, but that is a dangerous state to be in. Alcohol poisoning causes death, and when a person gets to the point where they’re unable to control themselves and vomiting all over the place, the’re way past “one too many drinks” and poisoning is a very real possibility.  


There’s a lot of science behind getting drunk, and most of it involves the chemical manipulation of some pretty important bodily functions. Think about this infographic the next time you’re at a party and someone passes out.