What It Means to be Legally "Drunk"

The term drunk is the state of being intoxicated by consuming alcoholic beverages to a degree that mental and physical faculties are noticeably impaired. Severe drunkenness leads to acute alcohol intoxication. Common symptoms can include slurred speech, impaired balance, poor coordination, flushed face, reddened eyes, reduced inhibition and uncharacteristic behavior. Legally drunk, is a term used when talking about DUI or DWI laws regarding whether someone has been drinking and driving.

What is Means to Be Drunk

Drunkenness can result in temporary experience of a wide range of emotions, ranging from anger, sadness, and depression to euphoria, lightheartedness, joviality, and lose sexual inhibition. Consuming excessive amounts of alcohol often leads to a "hangover" the following day.

Before the discovery that alcoholism was a disease, drunk was the only way to refer to an alcoholic. That terminology came about in the 1860's. So, before that, drunk was the term people used to refer to the poor wretch who was always drinking too much alcohol, also known as the "town drunk".

All 50 states have set .08 BAC as the legal limit for driving a motor vehicle.


To be called a "drunk" usually implies someone is an alcoholic, and suffers from alcoholism. The term being a drunk means the person gets inebriated regularly. The problem with being a drunk is that a person, suffering from alcoholism often does not realize the extent of their drinking problem. The disease of alcoholism often means they are unable to stop the insidious cycle do to what is known as the "phenomena of craving".

People who regularly drink enough alcohol until they "blackout," have a serious problem and need treatment for alcoholism. They are "alcoholic" and need help. Alcoholism can be put into permanent remission through a process of rehab, treatment and recovery.


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BAC - Blood Alcohol Content

Someone's blood alcohol content (BAC) is measured to help determine how much alcohol is in their system and whether they can safely operate a motor vehicle. Blood alcohol content is usually expressed as a percentage. The percentage is the amount of ethanol in the blood over the mass of alcohol per volume of blood. So, for example, a BAC of .08 would be .08 grams of alcohol per 1000 grams of blood.

state of CA DUI blood alcohol chart

courtesy of: http://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/wcm/connect/dmv_content_en/dmv/pubs/hdbk/actions_drink

Alcohol Statistics

  • 24.6 percent of people 18 or older engaged in binge drinking in the past month
  • 7.1 percent reported they engaged in heavy drinking in the past month

Binge drinking, the most common form of drinking, is defined as consuming For women, 4 or more drinks during a single occasion. For men, 5 or more drinks during a single occasion.

Heavy drinking is defined as consuming For women, 8 or more drinks per week. For men, 15 or more drinks per week.


young woman blacked outDrunk is a slang term for dependence on alcohol. Drunkenness stems from the body's gradually inability to tolerate alcohol. Being an alcoholic is usually a gradual process, whereby the human body loses its ability to deal with a minimum amount of alcohol.

The real problem comes when even a small amount of alcohol triggers a powerful craving for more and more alcohol. A person with alcoholism usually gets drunk on a regular basis and never intended to get drunk. top luxury drug alcohol rehab treatment centers
A drunk is considered someone who gets drunk regularly. And they often suffer from the low lifestyle of being a drunk. Being a drunk, they are often caught in a catch-22. Their self esteem is so low they can't get the help they need on their own. Being a drunk also connotes being an alcoholic. And an alcoholic is someone who is suffering from alcoholism.

The reason a drunk can't quit drinking on their own is two-fold. First of all, their bodies crave alcohol as they go through the alcohol withdrawal process. Secondly, alcoholism usually requires going through the alcohol rehabilitation process which addresses the other issues of why the drink so much.


You Tube Videos About Drunkness

According to Science Daily, the 70 most popular videos depicting drunkenness on YouTube account for more than 330 million views, with little or no portrayal of the negative outcomes of excessive alcohol consumption.

YouTube Videos of Drunkenness Don't Show Alcohol's Harms



More Information

The ABC's of BAC



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