The facts on binge drinking

By Elizabeth Temple - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -  Having a beer is one thing...but five drinks in two hours, considered binge drinking, can land you in jail or even in the emergency room.

"We stick a big tube down your throat and I can promise you it's not a fun's not comfortable" said Dr. Joseph Anderson, an emergency room doctor at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.

He is talking about getting your stomach pumped which can happen after a night of binge drinking. You can find charts which help you track how many drinks it will take to impair you. The charts are based on weight, so a 160 pound man only needs two drinks before he is legally impaired. The main questions people ask Dr. Anderson, though, is when should they go to the ER?

"If someone starts breathing less than 10 times a minute it's time to start bringing them in here so we can monitor them," he answers.

He also added that, "the legal limit is .08 and if you're under 21 it's .02 which is a big difference."

Underage drinkers actually binge the most. In fact, 90% of all binge drinkers are under 21 years old and Dr. Anderson says there are more risks than just getting caught.

"There's a high incidence of STD's with drinking because you're doing things you wouldn't normally do if you're sober," he said.

He also adds that embarrassment is another unfortunate consequence.

"A lot of family members often take a picture with their cell phone to show them after," he said.

Dr. Anderson says also that the Fourth of July weekend tends to be one of the busiest in the ER all year.

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