It’s not a race, drink at your own pace
It takes up to an hour for your body to process each unit of alcohol (a unit is slightly less than you’d find in a typical half pint of lager).
So have a break between drinks. Skinny, short, male, female... everyone copes with alcohol differently, so why try and keep up with your mates? Save face (and money) by sticking to smaller rounds with a couple of friends - or avoid them altogether. Turning down a drink is much less embarrassing than throwing one up.
Finish your drink too quickly and you'll feel pressured to get another. Instead, make your drink (and your night) last longer. Chat, sip, snack, drink water, get some fresh air and chat some more.
Looking good, my friend
For a great night, you want your mates to be on top form too. So getting snacks and a jug of water for the table could be good for everyone.
Keeping an eye on your friends (and yourself!) can help avoid the potential embarrassment of being put in a cab, cleaning sick from your shoes or missing out on what might be a great night..
If one of you does overdo it, make sure you know the difference between a bit too much and alcohol poisoning, and what to do if it’s really serious.
How to help someone who’s drunk too much
Watch your drink
Having your drink spiked with alcohol or drugs can make you very vulnerable. You might not notice a difference to the taste of your drink and may simply feel sick or drowsy - the symptoms vary depending on the person or the substance(s) used.
Get into the habit of not leaving your drink unattended when you go to toilets, or to dance. And if you drink within the UK low risk guidelines (and your own limits) you’ll be in the best position to keep you and your friends safe.
Spiking someone else’s drink – even ‘just’ with extra alcohol as a prank is a criminal offence, and can have serious, dangerous health effects.
If you or your friend suspect you’ve had your drink spiked, tell a bouncer or bar staff, and call an ambulance if their condition deteriorates.
Drink spiking – the facts
Don’t drink and drown
Alcohol seriously affects your ability to get yourself out of trouble.
The Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) say a quarter of all adult drowning victims have alcohol in their bloodstream. Alcohol numbs the senses, particularly sight, sound and touch, making swimming very difficult. So, even if you are tempted to be reckless, please act responsibly near water especially after drinking alcohol.
The RLSS have a dedicated Don’t Drink and Drown campaign to try and reduce the high number of university students who drown after drinking.