Drug Education Paper - Brain Essay Example
Toby Swims 2nd Period Drug Education Paper Just about everyone knows that the legal drinking age throughout the United States is 21 - Drug Education Paper introduction. But according to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, almost 80% of high school students have tried alcohol. Deciding whether to drink is a personal decision that we each eventually have to make. Alcohol is created when grains, fruits, or vegetables are fermented. Fermentation is a process that uses yeast or bacteria to change the sugars in the food into alcohol. Fermentation is used to produce many items even cheese and medications.
Alcohol has different forms and can be used as a cleaner, an antiseptic, or a sedative. When people drink alcohol, it’s absorbed into their bloodstream. From there, it affects the central nervous system. The central nervous system controls the bodily functions. Alcohol is a depressant, which means it slows the function of the central nervous system. Alcohol actually blocks some of the messages trying to get to the brain. This alters a person’s perceptions, emotions, movement, vision, and hearing. Alcohol can help a person feel more relaxed or less anxious.
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More alcohol causes greater changes in the brain, resulting in intoxication. People who have overused alcohol may stagger, lose their coordination, and slur their speech. They will probably be confused and disoriented. Intoxication can make someone very friendly and talkative or very aggressive and angry. People who are intoxicated may think they’re moving properly when they’re not. They may act totally out of character. When large amounts of alcohol are consumed in a short period of time, alcohol poisoning can result. Violent vomiting is usually the first symptom of alcohol poisoning.
Extreme sleepiness, unconsciousness, difficulty breathing, dangerously low blood sugar, seizures, and even death may result. From a very young age, kids see advertising messages showing beautiful people enjoying life and alcohol. And because many parents and other adults use alcohol socially, having beer or wine with dinner, alcohol seems harmless to many teens. Although it’s illegal to buy alcohol in the United States until the age of 21, most teens can get access to it. Teens who drink put themselves at risk for obvious problems with the law. Teens who drink are also more likely to get into fights and commit crimes than those who don’t.
People who drink regularly also often have problems with school. Drinking can damage a student’s ability to study well and get decent grades, as well as affect sports performance. The impression is that drinking is cool, but the nervous system changes that come from drinking alcohol can make people do stupid or embarrassing things, like throwing up or peeing on themselves. Drinking also gives people bad breath, and hangovers. Teens who drink are more likely to be sexually active and to have unsafe, unprotected sex, resulting in pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.
Use of alcohol greatly increases the chance that a teen will be involved in a car crash, homicide, or suicide. Teen drinkers are more likely to get fat or have health problems, too. One study by the University of Washington found that people who regularly had five or more drinks in a row starting at age 13 were much more likely to be overweight or have high blood pressure by age 24 than their non-drinking peers. People who continue drinking heavily well into adulthood risk damaging their organs, such as the liver, heart, and brain. The best thing to do is not begin drinking in the first place.