Blacking Out From Drinking – Did I Just Blackout??
After 2 decades of drinking, I tended to accept certain aspects of my life as ‘that is just the way it is’.
Blacking out from drinking was one of them.
I do not mean falling asleep or being wiped out from throwing too much booze into my body than it could handle. To me, blacking out from drinking too much meant bits of my memory went missing.
And I mean totally.
Like people telling me that I went to places or did things – things that were not even embarrassing sometimes – but having no recollection of it at all.
Quite often I can remember drinking, then missing a few hours, and then ‘sobering up’ a bit and having zero recollection of the past few hours.
At first this was scary, but I do remember it just becoming part of what happened to me when I drunk heavily. Which I did. A lot.
These ‘blackouts’ did not really mean much to me. I mean, why should they concern me?
I was young (at some point!) and walking around without a worry in the world. Bulletproof.
It is only as I have become sober and now a mid 40s year old man that I have realised how dangerous these blackouts from drinking too much are. If only I knew the exact damage that I was actually causing, it may have made me think twice at least.
Let’s explore this experience in more detail, what is actually going on and what we can do about blackouts when drinking.
What Is Blacking Out drinking?
Blacking out from drinking is a common occurrence, especially among young adults.
It happens when a person drinks too much alcohol in a short period of time and their brain is unable to create new memories for a period of time. This can be a dangerous situation because the person may not be aware of their actions and could put themselves in all sorts of positions.
Blacking out drinking, also known as “buzzed driving”, is the act of drinking so much alcohol that a person actually blacks out.
This means that they will be unable to form new memories and will not be able to remember what happened while they were blacked out.
Blackouts are a sign of alcohol addiction and can lead to risky behavior, such as driving while intoxicated. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism defines binge drinking as “drinking five or more drinks in a row for men, or four or more drinks in a row for women, within two hours”.
If you experience blackouts, it is important to seek help from a medical professional.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism describe blackouts as “Alcohol-related blackouts are gaps in a person’s memory for events that occurred while they were intoxicated.
These gaps happen when a person drinks enough alcohol to temporarily block the transfer of memories from short-term to long-term storage—known as memory consolidation—in a brain area called the hippocampus.”
When Do Blackouts Occur? – What Causes A Blackout
An alcoholic blackout is caused by heavy drinking or binge drinking, which can lead to memory loss.
Drinking too much alcohol too quickly can cause a blackout, as can drinking alcohol beyond one’s tolerance level. There are two types of blackouts: fragmentary and en bloc.
In a fragmentary blackout, a drinker may be able to remember some details of the night but not others. In an en bloc blackout, the drinker cannot remember any details of the night.
An alcohol blackout is when a person drinks so much alcohol that they cannot remember what happened while they were drinking. These can occur after just a few drinks, and the person may not realize that they are experiencing a blackout until the next day. The first is where there are aspects of a given event missing, hazy recollections with facts or people missing from the event in question
There are two types of alcohol blackouts: fragmentary and en bloc. Fragmentary blackouts are when a person can remember some parts of the night, but not others.
This is a phenomenon that can occur after drinking large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time.
Blackouts are characterized by an inability to remember what happened while under the influence. Although most common among young adults, they can happen to anyone who drinks too much, too fast. En bloc blackouts are when a person cannot remember any part of the night.
A blackout is defined as a gap in memory caused by excessive alcohol intake. It occurs when a person drinks so much that they can no longer form new memories and instead, can only remember bits and pieces from before the drinking started. Blackouts are different from passing out because when you pass out, you will sleep and eventually sober up, but when you blackout, you remain awake and conscious.
Blackouts occur when a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reaches a certain level. People who drink large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time (binge drinking) are more likely to experience blackouts. The amount of alcohol that leads to a blackout depends on several factors, including the person’s pattern of drinking and how much alcohol they have consumed.
People who drink too much alcohol in a single session may not be able to form new memories. This is because alcohol interferes with the brain’s ability to store information. Blackouts are more likely to occur if someone drinks a large amount of alcohol in a short period of time, or if they have a history of heavy drinking.
When experiencing an alcohol blackout from drinking, there are 2 types of blackout.
The first is where there are aspects of a given event missing, hazy recollections with facts or people missing from the event in question. And the second is when hours or more has simply disappeared from a person’s memory. These are the most severe of blackouts – and frighteningly, what I regularly used to experience in my youth, early 20s and right through to my 30s. Regularly, and without even a second thought to it at the time.
From personal experience, the blackouts were as they said on the tin really. I can remember one minute drinking with friends, maybe around someone’s house. And the next minute, it rolls on a few hours and there are some confused faces looking at me. The scenery had often changed. At times there were angry people around me, at times there were not.
At first, I remember my friends thinking that I was just making it up, that I was just drunk and a bit confused. But as I carried on through my drunken life, my friends accepted that I was a walking zombie at times and did not know where I was or what I was doing.
That is how I can best describe blacking out from drinking too much. It was like being a living zombie. Walking, talking but nothing inside the shell that was my body.
As a kid, I remember some ‘friends’ finding my drunken states quite entertaining. With friends like those, eh?
How can you tell if someone has had an alcohol blackout?
If someone is blacking out from drinking too much alcohol, it is not always clear to people around them that they are actually experiencing a blackout. Often they may just appear to be their ‘normal’ drunken selves. There are some indications that can be observed though.
- They are getting distracted easily
- When talking, they are repeating themselves
- They are acting out of character
- There is confusion evident, and the person may forget what they are saying or doing
- Struggling to follow a conversation
- There is a lack of concern about others in their company
- Maybe they have drunk a lot of alcohol quickly, or consumed a lot of alcohol without food or other non-alcoholic drinks
- They are behaving in a way that may be seen as risky, or something that they would not do normally
What to do if someone is blackout drunk
#Be there for them.
If you have a friend who is that drunk that they are experiencing blackouts, the best thing that you can do is to be there for them. If this is not possible, then make sure someone else can me. Someone who is not as drunk as the person who is blacking out.
When a person is blackout drunk, they may well be disorientated. Offer comfort and reassurance.
#Stop them drinking any more alcohol
If you are with a person who is blackout drunk, try and encourage them to stop alcohol. If possible, get them to have a non-alcoholic drink. Feeding someone is also a good way to slow people’s drinking down without them feeling that you are telling them what to do.
#Make sure they get home safely
Or keep them with you, if possible.
When I was in a state through drinking a few times, my friends called an ambulance for me. To be honest, I was pissed off at the time, but they probably saved my life on more than one occasion. If I ever felt that a friend was out of control or at any risk while blacking out from drinking, I would call emergency services.
What to do if you experience blackouts from drinking
There are some things that you can do to prevent blacking out, such as pacing yourself and eating before you drink.
Some suggestions to help you stop having blackouts are
- Have something to eat before and while drinking alcohol
- Try to slow down drinking, so if you are drinking fast, take sips and limit the actual speed that you consume an individual drink.
- People often have a non-alcoholic drink in-between drinks – using this as a ‘spacer method’. For example, drinking a glass of water between drinks.
If you are experiencing blacking out from drinking, it is a good indication that you should consider slowing down or even stopping your alcohol intake.
Are Blackouts a Sign of an Alcohol-Related Problem?
Are blackouts a sign of an alcohol-related problem?
Blackouts are a sign of an alcohol-related problem. When a person has a high blood alcohol level, they run the risk of blackouts This is when a person cannot remember what happened while they were drinking. Blackouts can be dangerous because the person may not remember how much alcohol they drank or what they did while they were drinking. If you or someone you know has experienced a blackout, it is important to get help from a medical professional or alcohol counsellor.
It is important to consider a person’s relationship with alcohol when determining whether or not blackouts are a sign of an alcohol-related problem. For some people, blackouts may be a sign of alcohol use, while for others, they may be a sign of an alcohol use disorder.
If you are concerned about your own or someone else’s relationship with alcohol, it is important to consider their patterns of drinking, any associated problems, and how much they drink. If you are worried about your own drinking, you can talk to your doctor or a counsellor about your concerns.
How Long Do Alcohol Blackouts Last?
blackouts, or alcohol-induced amnesia, are a common occurrence among heavy drinkers. Blackouts can last for a few hours or even days, and during that time, the person will have no memory of what happened. Although blackouts are usually harmless, they can sometimes lead to dangerous situations. If you do black out, it is important to seek medical help right away.
What Steps Can I Take to Avoid Alcohol Blackouts?
Most people have experienced a hangover after drinking alcohol. But some people go beyond that, experiencing what’s called an “alcohol blackout.” This is when you drink so much alcohol that you can’t remember what happened while you were drinking. It’s like temporary amnesia. Alcohol blackouts can be dangerous because you may do things that you wouldn’t normally do, like get into a car accident or have unprotected sex. If you want to avoid alcohol blackouts, there are some steps you can take:
First, don’t drink too much
too fast. Sipping your drink slowly will help your body process the alcohol better and prevent you from getting drunk too quickly. Second, drink water in between alcoholic beverages. This will help to keep you hydrated and slow down your drinking.
There are a few things you can do to help avoid blackouts from drinking alcohol. First, be aware of how much you’re drinking and try to pace yourself. If you’re binge drinking or drinking too much in a short period of time, you’re more likely to black out. Second, don’t drink on an empty stomach—eating can help slow down the absorption of alcohol into your system. And finally, drink plenty of water throughout the night to stay hydrated. If you start to feel like you’re going to blackout, stop drinking and drink some water.
Are Some People Predisposed to Blackouts?
Are Some People Predisposed to Blackouts?
People who blackout after drinking alcohol may be predisposed to the condition, according to a new study.
The study, published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, looked at the link between blackouts and a person’s blood alcohol level.
Researchers found that people who had a blood alcohol level of 0.15% or higher were more likely to black out.
Blackouts are a type of memory loss that can occur after drinking alcohol. During a blackout, a person may be unable to remember what happened during a period of time when they were drinking.
While the new study does not prove that people with a higher blood alcohol level are predisposed to blackouts, it does suggest that there may be a link between the two.
Long-Term Effects of Heavy Drinking
Long-term heavy drinking can lead to memory loss. This is because alcohol damages the brain and impairs its ability to function properly. Heavy drinkers are also at risk of developing dementia, which is a decline in cognitive function that can severely impact one’s ability to live independently.
Chronic alcohol consumption can take a toll on your health. It can cause problems with your liver, heart, and pancreas. It can also lead to cancer. Heavy drinking can also cause problems with your mental health. The effects of alcohol can make you feel depressed and anxious. It can also make it hard to think clearly. If you drink heavily for a long time, it can damage your brain and memory.
Is Binge Drinking and Blacking Out Signs of Addiction?
Yes, binge drinking and blacking out are both signs of addiction. If you find yourself drinking more than you used to in order to get drunk, or if you regularly black out after drinking, it’s a sign that you have a problem with alcohol. It’s important to seek help for alcoholism before it gets worse.
Binge drinking and blacking out may seem like harmless fun, but they can actually be signs of a more serious problem. If you find yourself doing these things on a regular basis, it may be time to seek help.
Binge drinking is defined as consuming large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time. This can lead to serious health problems, including liver damage and brain damage. Blacking out is another dangerous consequence of binge drinking. When you black out, you are essentially losing consciousness. This means that you could injure yourself or someone else without even realizing it.
If you are concerned that you or someone you know may be addicted to alcohol, please seek help from a medical professional. addiction is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly.
As always, if you have any concerns, please do speak to a medical professional.
This is something that I put off for a long time, through some rationale or other inside my own head. In hindsight, I wish I was just very honest with the whole medical world. The more honest you are, the better the chance they have of helping you, assessing your needs and establishing what is going on with you.
Take care of yourself. This is not a dress-rehearsal.