The Peoria County Coroner, Jamie Harwood, joined our anchors on Good Day Central Illinois to discuss the impacts of binge drinking.

Problems with binge drinking can be seen across the country, especially among teens and college students. The CDC currently reports 88,000 deaths annually from binge drinking. Of those deaths, 1,800 are young adults between the ages of 18 to 24. With students back in the classroom, it is essential to be aware of the signs and dangers of binge drinking. Even in the cases where binge drinking does not lead to death, it can often lead to long-term issues; like alcohol use disorders, as well as chronic liver problems and even liver disease.

Alcohol metabolizes about one drink per hour, but binge drinking can become life-threatening. Drinking becomes lethal for women after drinking about four drinks in a two hour time span and about five drinks in a two hour time span for men. Since binge drinking can often become lethal, it is vital to be watching out for the signs that drinking has become life-threatening.

A person who has been binge drinking may be in danger if they seem confused, are starting to slur their speech, feel cold, start sweating, if they go unresponsive, or if they pass out. A person’s respiration system can often slow or stop completely. Harwood says, “The liver can only go for so long, and once it’s done you’re going to start having nausea, vomiting and throwing up.” When this happens a person is at a huge risk of choking.

Harwood reminds us to be cautious and that these situations can happen to anyone.

If you know a loved one who is struggling with alcoholism— UnityPlace, in Peoria, is a local resource to get help with addiction.

Families are encouraged to seek help, especially if their loved ones are having an acute emergency with too much alcohol in their system. In these cases— call 9-1-1 to get them to emergency treatment.
If your loved one is wrestling with chronic and continuous binge drinking, it is best to seek treatment.