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What is Alcohol

What is Alcohol

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Published by Andy

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Published by: Andy on Jul 26, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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What is alcohol?
Alcohol is a drug (a chemical that has an effect on the body, and is not a food).

There are different kinds of alcohol.
The kind that people drink is called ethyl alcohol.
This is made by fermenting different things with yeast and water.

What is used and the way this is done depends on

what kind of drink is being made.
Grain makes whisky and beer.
Potatoes make vodka.
Grapes make wine and brandy.
Honey makes mead.
Sugar makes rum.

How does alcohol affect people?
1. Asmall amount of alcohol can make the person feel relaxed.
2.With more alcohol, people cannot control their behaviour (they may do silly
things or be violent), and their movements are more clumsy (uncoordinated).
What happens to alcohol in the body?
1. Alcohol goes from the mouth to the stomach and small intestine.
2. It passes through the walls of the stomach and small intestine into the
3. The blood takes the alcohol to the brain where it slows down the messages in the
brain (alcohol is a depressant drug).
4. The blood also takes the alcohol to the liver, which starts to take out the alcohol
from the blood.
5. The more alcohol that is drunk the longer it takes for the liver to clean it all
Why young people drink alcohol
All the ads about alcohol show people having fun, surrounded by friends, and give the
message that drinking alcohol is super cool.

Many kids would see parents and older young people drinking alcohol as a social thing. It
is not surprising that some kids think that drinking alcohol is cool, makes them seem
more grown up and is the 'thing to do'.

Some kids may think it is daring to try alcohol and others may feel that they want to be
part of the group who are trying alcohol.
The Law in Britain says that children under 18 cannot buy alcohol, or be served with
alcohol in a hotel, and they are not allowed to be given alcohol in any public place unless
they are given the alcohol by their parent.
There are good reasons for this.

A young person's body cannot cope with the effects of alcohol and this may lead to
him/her behaving in an unsafe way. Also too much alcohol is a dangerous poison for
children. Many very young children have had to go to hospital with alcohol poisoning
after they have gone around the house after an adult's party, and 'finished' all the drinks
that have been left where they can reach them.

Too much alcohol
A standard drink has 10 grams of alcohol in it. The size of a standard drink depends on
what the drink is.

Spirits, like whisky or vodka, have a lot of alcohol in a small
amount so a standard drink would be a small amount, about 30

Wine would have 10 grams of alcohol in 100 ml.
A light beer would have 10 grams of alcohol in 425ml.
Cans and bottles of alcoholic drinks may have different amounts

of alcohol, depending on the amount of liquid.
You can work out how many standard drinks are in them by
looking at how much alcohol they have.

When people have too much alcohol they get sick (and many of them vomit), they are not in full control of their minds and bodies, and they are not able to think clearly or to make good choices (especially about whether it is safe for them to drive).

Some people who have had too much to drink become angry and they can hurt other
people, including people in their family.
Keeping yourself safe
You can do this by staying away from alcohol yourself.
Don't get sucked in to trying something which may harm you.
Learn how to say'n o' by:
always asking what the drink is that someone is giving you
thinking of reasons like "I don't like the taste, or "I've got to go

home/out/shopping now."
asking for a soft drink or saying that you are not thirsty
suggesting that you do something else like watch a movie, or go

for a bike ride
calling mum or dad to come and get you, or going home if you
live nearby
never getting into a car with a driver who has been drinking.

It is important that you keep
yourself safe from the effects of
grown-ups' drinking.

Get away from someone who
has drunk too much.
Stay close to an adult who you
trust if there is alcohol around.
Did you know?

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