Being drunk and being stoned are worlds different. Many people want to rope them in together, but the truth is that alcohol and marijuana are not even on the same planet when it comes to their effects. Below we break down the facts associated with being drunk from alcohol or stoned from marijuana.
The Low Down On Getting Drunk
1. What’s Happening
Becoming intoxicated from the consumption of alcohol, or simply known as being drunk, is caused by ingesting an excessive amount of ethyl alcohol. Intoxication happens when more alcohol is consumed and enters the blood stream than the liver can metabolize. Ethanol is a central nervous system suppressant, which is what causes the typical drunk symptoms. The first effects are on our mood, we begin to feel euphoric and our coordination is less controlled. Slurred speech, poor judgment, memory loss, vomiting, coma, and death can all be caused by the over consumption of alcohol.
2. How Much Is Too Much?
A strong and healthy liver can handle about 1.7 ounces of alcoholic beverages every 90 minutes. This translates into one standard drink ever hour and a half. Anything over this amount will begin to produce the symptoms of being drunk. At 300 mg/dl memory lapse and stage 1 anesthesia begins. Anything above 400 mg/dl respiratory failure and coma could be the result.
3. Alcohol Poisoning
Alcohol poisoning is one of the largest risks associated with drinking alcohol. It is a very serious, and even deadly, result of drinking large quantities of alcohol in a short period of time. The amount of alcohol that could result in alcohol poisoning varies from person to person based on their gender, age, body weight, and alcohol tolerance level. If alcohol poisoning is suspected and one or more of these symptoms are present the person needs emergency medical treatment.
Low Body Temperature
4. Drunk Driving
Drunk driving is one of the most common causes of road deaths in the United States. When people drink they often tend to gain a false sense of confidence, and feel as though nothing bad could happen. This false confidence causes people to get behind the wheel when they are intoxicated. Vision is blurred, perception is altered, and reaction times are significantly lower when you are drunk, all of these are needed in peak condition in order for safe driving. When someone decides to get behind the wheel while they are drunk they are putting every body on the road, sidewalks, in their car, and themselves at risk.
5. Alcohol Abuse
Alcohol is a habit forming substance that nearly 20 million people in the U.S. are addicted to. Alcohol causes extreme liver damage and can lead to disease such as cirrhosis of the liver, as well as digestion and intestinal problems when heavily and regularly used.
6. Some Statistics
– Nearly 100,00 people die from alcohol related deaths every year in the United States.
– Alcohol Misuse and related problems cost the United States over 200 billion dollars every year.
-Alcohol causes over 200 disease and injury-related health conditions.
-10 percent of children in the U.S. Live with one or more parents with alcohol problems.
-1.4 million people are arrested every year for drunk driving.
-Young people that drink are 7 times more likely to try other drugs.
-40 percent of all violent crimes are committed while a person is under the influence of alcohol.
One nasty side effect of alcohol intoxication is the next morning. Hangovers are caused because alcohol causes dehydration, and water is usually not consumed during a night of heavy drinking. Hangovers produce bad head aches, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue and can last up to 24 hours.
Important Things To Know About Being “Stoned”
1. Why It Happens
THC is the chemical found in marijuana that is responsible for it’s recreational effects. THC stands for tetrahydrocannabiol and works by binding to nerve cells in the brain. We have receptors, called cannabinoid, in our brain that are linked to thinking, time perception, coordination, and pleasure. This is where the effects take place. THC also causes cells in the brain to release a chemical call dopamine, which causes a euphoric feeling. The effects of cannabis are felt seconds to minutes after being inhaled, but consumption in the form of food takes longer to enter the system.
2. How It Feels
Marijuana, a natural and unaltered plant, works mainly by intensifying feels or experiences. For example you may listen to music and think it is the best music you have ever heard, or eat something that you normally eat, but it tastes ten times better. This can go the opposite way as well, if you are focusing your thoughts on something negative, it will make you feel very bad. Marijuana also makes you somewhat drowsy, so sleep is a common activity among marijuana users. The way being stoned will feel is different for everybody, and also depends on the type of marijuana being smoked.
3. Negative Effects
Many pro cannabis people want to argue that there are no negative effects of marijuana but this is not the case. Marijuana smoke, like tobacco smoke, contains carcinogens, which can be harmful for the respiration system. However, smoking marijuana is not the only way to consume it. Headache is a common effect that people report, but usually comes on when the effects of the marijuana are wearing off. Very short term memory loss can also occur, meaning you may stop talking for a moment and completely forget what you were talking about. Paranoia is another common effect of marijuana, many novice smokers become self conscious or startled by the changes they are feeling.
4. Lots of Choices
Smoking is not the only way to ingest marijuana. Today’s technology has been able to separate the THC chemical and isolate it. It is put into things such as candies, drinks, pills, baked goods, and other food items. The term for these products are “edibles” and produce the same effects and low risk as traditional marijuana smoking. Vaporizing marijuana is another common way to get “stoned”. This is done by vaporizing the THC directly off of the marijuana and inhaled as vapor instead of smoke.
Differences Between Being Drunk and Stoned
Being drunk and being stoned are two entirely different experiences that should be treated as such. The over consumption of alcohol causes memory loss, nausea, coordination problems, and judgment impairment, all of which can be very dangerous. Marijuana does not cause any of these effects, and the only impairment that is may cause is a slight lack of hand eye coordination and an altered sense of time.
2. The Next Day
Hangovers are an inevitable consequence of alcohol consumption. They are painful, and inconvenient. They often cause the person experiencing them to make the no more alcohol proclamation. Marijuana has no residual effects, it does not cause any form of withdrawal or negative effects on the body after the original effects have wore off.
Not a single person has ever died from the over consumption of marijuana. There is no such thing as a marijuana overdose. Alcohol however is the third largest killer in the United States. Alcohol poisoning is easy to obtain, and extremely dangerous.
Another huge difference between alcohol and marijuana is that in majority of places marijuana is illegal. It is considered a drug and is treated the same as other drug possessions. Nearly 1 million arrests are made each year for marijuana related crimes alone.