As a person consumes alcohol, it builds up in their system until the body metabolizes it. The amount of alcohol that’s in the body has a direct impact on a person’s ability to drive. While some individuals think that they can drive safely after drinking, even smaller amounts of alcohol can have a negative effect on their decision making, cognitive and manual abilities.
There are many factors that affect how the body breaks down alcohol. One of these is gender. Typically, women will have a higher blood alcohol concentration than men because of their body composition and a lower number of alcohol dehydrogenase enzymes in their bodies relative to males. A person who has a high muscle mass is less likely to be impaired by a specific amount of alcohol than a person who has less muscle mass. A thin person will usually have a higher BAC than a heavier person.
One thing that a person can do to try to negate some of the impacts of alcohol on their abilities is to eat before they have any adult beverages. Food in the stomach reduces the rate of absorption of any alcohol you consume. It’s important to eat before you consume the alcohol, however, because food eaten afterward won’t help.
Other factors, such as health conditions and stress can also affect how your body handles the alcohol. Interestingly, the functional tolerance that you have with alcohol doesn’t play a role in your BAC, and this can lead to you thinking that you’re able to drive safely when you’re actually legally intoxicated.
If you’re pulled over for suspicion of drunk driving, you need to get started on your defense strategy immediately. The consequences are severe, so don’t try to use a plan that’s hastily put together.