Many families in South Carolina have holiday traditions that involve the consumption of alcohol. Maybe your grandmother makes a rum cake but adds the rum after baking so that it doesn’t evaporate in the oven. Everyone knows that the kids aren’t even allowed to try her special cake.
Perhaps everybody plays a drinking game during the Thanksgiving or New Year’s Day football game. It is very common for people to integrate alcohol into their holiday celebrations and also for overindulgence to occur at holiday parties. People feel safe and happy while around their families, or they treat alcohol as a way to self-medicate when they are unhappy but cannot yet leave.
Unfortunately, how people add alcohol to their celebrations undoubtedly contributes to the spike in drunk driving crashes that typically occurs on certain holidays or the weekends that occur right before or after major holidays. Is it possible for you to enjoy family traditions involving alcohol without running the risk of an arrest after the party?
Known your limits and make good timing decisions
For some people, alcohol has a much stronger effect than it does on others. Underlying health conditions, age and weight all influence how much alcohol someone can consume without showing signs of impairment and how quickly their body metabolizes the alcohol they do drink. People who will feel the effects of alcohol more strongly need to know what they can handle.
The average adult can metabolize one drink per hour. If you have mixed drinks, a single glass of eggnog or holiday punch might actually constitute two or three drinks depending on the amount of alcohol included. Tracking how much you consume and then giving yourself ample time to metabolize that alcohol before you even think about leaving the hosts home.
You might arrange for your spouse or your newly licensed teen driver to take the wheel for the first hour if you must leave shortly after enjoying a drink. Provided that you know what you have had to drink and give your body time to process it, you can enjoy alcohol with the rest of your family without putting yourself or your other loved ones at risk.
Being respectful and responsible about how you consume alcohol will reduce your risk of facing drunk driving charges this holiday season.