First Aid & Alcohol Poisoning

With New Year’s just behind us, a reminder on first-aid for alcohol poisoning can help you have fun and stay safe for 2018. This condition can be difficult to spot since a person that had been drinking can react to alcohol in several different ways. With over 77,000 hospitalizations due to alcohol poisoning in 2016, it’s best to learn how to prevent it happening to you or a friend.
Alcohol poisoning is generally caused by excessive drinking of large amounts in a short time span. In general, this would equate to on average at least 4 drinks for women and at least 5 drinks for men in quick succession. It can cause central nervous system depression, unconsciousness, a possible coma or death.
Signs of Alcohol Poisoning

  • Moist, red face
  • Noisy, deep breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Slurred speech
  • Confusion
  • Pounding, strong pulse
  • Unresponsiveness

If the person is unresponsive you will also have to check for a rapid, weak pulse, shallow breathing or wide pupils that have a poor reaction to light. If you suspect alcohol poisoning for any reason, make sure call 911 and keep the person warm while you’re waiting for help to arrive. If at any point they becomes unresponsive, apply the first-aid actions required for someone that has lost responsiveness.
Sometimes it can be difficult to make a call as to whether a person has just had too much to drink or whether they are suffering from alcohol poisoning. If you’re unsure and suspect there is a chance of poisoning, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and have the person checked out by trained medical personnel.
Learn more about first aid for specific situations like this at, or contact us today to learn more about first aid and CPR courses near you.