If drinking a massive part of your social activities, or something you do quite often, you may be concerned about how many drinks/alcohol it takes for a person to get drunk/lose all sense of consciousness. Several people enjoy a good drinking session after a long day of work, or simply to enjoy with friends. Most people prefer a cold beer or a cocktail at a bar.
Whatever the case may be, we’ll be discussing just “how many shots does it take for a person to get drunk?”, how it affects your body, and how much alcohol is considered an excessive amount. Just keep reading to find out answers to these questions.
Alcohol Absorption and Metabolization
Alcohol goes straight to the stomach when consumed, and from there, it’s absorbed into the bloodstream. If you haven’t eaten anything before consuming alcohol, it’ll go directly to your small intestine at a quick pace. The surface area of your small intestine is much higher than your stomach’s, hence it has more area for absorption.
By that, you can deduce that alcohol will enter your blood at a faster pace. If you consume alcohol on a full/half-full stomach, your stomach will digest the food first before the alcohol, slowing down the absorption of alcohol into your bloodstream.
With that out of the way, once the alcohol enters your bloodstream, it’s free to enter other organs of your body, like the liver; the organ that’s responsible for breaking down most of the alcohol consumed.
How does the body metabolize alcohol?
The liver metabolizes alcohol in a process that involves two steps.
Step 1: Dehydrogenase (an enzyme) is used to break down alcohol, and turn it into a chemical labelled acetaldehyde.
Step 2: Acetaldehyde dehydrogenase, a separate liver enzyme breaks down alcohol into acetic acid.
Furthermore, your cells break acetic acid into carbon dioxide and water. These compounds are then eliminated from your body via breathing and urination.
What causes the “tipsy” feeling?
Now that you know how the alcohol in your system is eliminated, just how do you get drunk? Well, your liver can’t metabolize all the alcohol you consume at once, so some of it travels to other organs of your body, like your brain. When it reaches your brain, it slows it down because alcohol is a depressant of your central nervous system.
When your brain is slowed down, the neurons present in your brain process nerve impulses at a slower pace. That leads to things like “Impaired Judgement” or actions associated with being drunk. Not only that, but alcohol also stimulates the release of neurotransmitters like “Seratonin” and “Dopamine”. This leads to increased happiness/relaxation as these neurotransmitters are associated with pleasure/reward.
Furthermore, this can also lead to physical symptoms of intoxication like flushing, sweating, and increased urination.
What’s the cause of hangovers?
A hangover is an aftereffect of consuming too much alcohol. Symptoms vary according to the type of person, and they’re always unpleasant. We’ve jotted down a list of what causes a hangover that’s listed below:
- Dehydration: Consuming too much alcohol results in an excessive amount of urination, that further results in fluid loss. This can be the cause of headaches, fatigue, and thirst.
- Irritation of the GI tract: Alcohol may irritate the stomach lining, resulting in nausea and stomach pain.
- Sleep disruption: Drinking more times than often can lead to poor sleep, which further leads to increased feelings of tiredness/fatigue.
- Low blood sugar: Alcohol can cause low blood sugar that results in feelings of tiredness, and causes a person to feel weak/shaky.
- Acetaldehyde: Acetaldehyde is the chemical that forms in your body through the metabolization of alcohol. It’s a toxic compound and can lead to inflammation inside your body, causing you to feel sick.
- Mini-Withdrawal: Alcohol has an inhibitory effect on your CNS. Once it wears off, your CNS is thrown off balance, and because of that, you may feel irritable or anxious.
As for the question, “how many shots does it take to get drunk”, the answer in simple words is that it takes about 10 shots to get completely drunk. That’s just about it for this article, if you have any further questions, feel free to let us know in the comment section down below, and assist others!
READ MORE: How many beers does it take to get drunk?