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Mixing caffeine and alcohol? Watch your blood alcohol levels.

You enjoy a night out with your friends, and you all enjoy drinking mixed drinks with caffeine. Your personal favorite is mixing Red Bull or other energy drinks with alcohol. It gives you a buzz and the energy you need to party throughout the night.

There are some risks to drinking caffeine and alcohol together, though, and you should know about them so that you can make a good decision about how you plan to get home after your night out. Here are a couple things to keep in mind.

Caffeine masks the depressant effects of alcohol

One of the first issues with alcohol and caffeine combined is that caffeine masks the effects of alcohol. That means that you may feel more aware and alert than you would if you hadn't had caffeine. The problem is that this is a false sense of awareness. You'll drink more because you think you haven't reached a blood alcohol concentration to make you feel drunk, but the truth is that you have already surpassed that level.

Mixing drinks has also been linked to binge drinking. In fact, those between the ages of 15 and 23 who mix their drinks are around four times more likely to end up binge drinking at least six drinks when they drink than those who do not.

Drinking caffeine doesn't help you sober up

It's a myth that caffeine helps you sober up. The only thing that truly helps you eliminate alcohol in your system is time. The alcohol has to be processed by the body.

If you drink caffeine, you may feel more alert, but don't let it fool you. It's not actually helping you perform better or bringing your blood alcohol concentration down. You can still end up with a DUI that you have to fight against in court.

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