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Alcohol - Avoid Risks

Risk Factorslow risk drinking levels info graphic

Alcohol often has a significant effect on people who use it and it is common for people to struggle to manage its impact on their functioning. Alcohol’s effects vary from person to person, depending on a variety of factors, including:

  • How much you drink
  • How often you drink
  • Type of drugs you use with alcohol
  • Your age
  • Your gender
  • Your health status
  • Your mental health status
  • Your family support system
  • Your family history

Alcohol use disorders develop when the brain is exposed to an amount of alcohol that causes structural and chemical changes to occur in the brain. The reason for different reactions to the same amount of alcohol in different people  is still  unknown. What we do know is that an unpredictable amount of alcohol can cause changes in the brain.These changes cause the pleasurable feelings one experiences when under the influence of alcohol which makes you want to drink more, even if it causes harm.

Image Source: ReThinking Drinking: "What's Low-risk drinking?"avoid risk sign


Take steps to be safe

Alcohol is often a factor in car crashes, falls, burns, drownings, suicides, homicides, sexual assaults and transfers of sexually transmitted infections. If you choose to drink alcohol, then stay within the low-risk limits as identified in Rethinking Drinking. Two steps you can take are to pace yourself and take precautions. For more information, please visit Rethinking Drinking.  

  • Tips to Reduce Risks from Alcohol  
  • Above the Influence This site's goal is to help teens stand up to negative pressures or influences. The more aware you are of the influences around you, the better prepared you will be to face them, including the pressure to use drugs, pills and alcohol.
  • Sponsored by NIAAA, and designed to change the drinking culture on college campuses. Includes alcohol facts; college and university alcohol policies; tips, techniques and statistics for campus personnel, media, parents, and peer educators. College Student Section includes interactive tools to see the effects of alcohol on the body, calculate BAC, calories and cost of drinking.
  • Driving Under the Influence Iowa Dept of Education site that explains requirements for persons driving under the influence within the state of Iowa. Approved Iowa locations for the state-mandated 12-hour drinking driver course.
  • MADD Mothers Against Drunk Driving
  • SADD Students Against Destructive Decisions
  • Stop Impaired Driving From NHTSA Seeks to save lives, prevent injuries, and reduce traffic-related healthcare and economic costs resulting from impaired driving.

Have questions? Support and assistance is available through Live Chat, by calling (855) 581-8111, or by texting (855) 895-8398.