According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an average of 29 people die per day due to alcohol-related driving accidents.
You've likely heard that driving and drinking can be devastating. But do you truly know the effects of your decisions?
Here are five of the most devastating effects of drinking and driving on yourself and those around you.
When you've had a few drinks and choose to get behind the wheel, you're effectively saying that you don't care about your safety. As if that wasn't bad enough, you're indicating that you don't care about the safety of those around you either.
Impaired driving can endanger everyone near you -- not just yourself, as most impaired drivers seem to think.
From families and animals to ambulances and police officers, impaired driving is so much more than just throwing caution to the wind. The effects can be life-altering.
Of course, not every instance of drinking and driving ends in a fatal or near-fatal car crash. However, this doesn't mean that you're off the hook.
Sobriety checks are becoming commonplace. Sometimes these checkpoints are chosen randomly, other times they're set up during holidays or other traffic-heavy days of the year.
If you're pulled over for drinking and driving, you're facing so much more than an arrest.
In addition to criminal charges, you'll have to pay thousands of dollars in legal fees in addition to mandatory DUI classes.
Alcohol impairs our inhibitions and affects our ability to make decisions. These decisions, such as lane placement, making sure headlights are on, and using turn signals, are harder to make after a few drinks.
Let's play devil's advocate for a moment and assume that you arrive at your destination safely.
You're still impaired, which means your ability to make good decisions (such as choosing to take a cab or call an Uber) is dramatically lessened.
Even seasoned drivers' ability to function suffers from ingesting alcohol.
That includes basic functions we take for granted like our vision. If you've ever had a few too many adult beverages, you've probably experienced this.
Your eyelids may get heavier, your vision may blur, and you may suddenly feel tired.
That's because alcohol is a depressant, which means that it reduces functional or nervous activity.
Finally, you'll lose the trust of your friends and family if you drink and drive. This is one of the less discussed effects of drinking and driving, but it can be impactful all the same.
Impaired driving shows such a lack of concern for other people that your loved ones may have a hard time trusting you for quite some time.
Next time you've had a few too many drinks, remember these effects. Your decisions affect everyone around you, not just yourself.
So please, play it safe and don't drink and drive.
If you feel that you may suffer from addiction, please reach out. Our online clinical evaluation can help you get the treatment you deserve. No one is beyond help.
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