What Alcohol Does To The Brain and Why You Shouldn’t Drive


Driving requires you to use your eyes, hands, and feet to control your car. But, your hands, feet, and eyes will not function if your brain is not working. The brain controls everything we do as it sends signals to our body. Safe driving requires you to be alert and make rapid decisions in changing situations while on the road, even the best self driving cars require your full attention.


However, some drivers commit the mistake of drinking alcohol and forgetting the profound effects of alcoholic beverages on the brain. Alcohol impairs the brain, thus compromising one’s cognitive and psychomotor skills.

Drunk Driving is a Leading Traffic Offense

Most traffic offenses occur because some drivers consume even a small amount of alcohol. Even just a bottle or two can make a difference in one’s brain. Drinking alcohol and driving should never work together.

Alcohol is a drug that is found in alcoholic drinks such as wine, beer, and spirits. This organic compound and depressant drug weakens the role of the central nervous system. Consequently, alcohol consumption is the leading cause of traffic offenses, car accidents, vehicular deaths, and highway injuries.

Consuming alcoholic beverages before driving seriously increases the probability of car tragedies, highway injuries, and vehicular deaths. Moreover, consumption of alcohol impairs the many skills of driving: judgment, comprehension, synchronization, concentration, vision, tracking and reaction time.

7 Ways Alcohol Impairs The Brain

As mentioned earlier, alcohol affects one’s motor and cognitive skills. Therefore, it is never a wise decision to drink alcohol before getting behind the wheel. To further understand, here are seven ways how alcohol impairs the brain and why you shouldn’t drive.

1. Judgement

Alcohol influences the body in a specific sequence. The initial segment of your body which alcohol influences are the mind, especially your judgment. This implies that your capacity to think, reason, prepare ahead, and settle on driving decisions is diminished – even if blood alcohol levels are as low as .02%.

2. Comprehension

Drinking can influence your capacity to appropriately comprehend or understand street signs and circumstances that you have to react to rapidly to maintain your safety on the road. Alcohol may cause you to be easily confused or inadequate to respond in any situation.

3. Synchronization

Alcoholic beverages affect both your gross motor skills and fine motor skills. This includes minute moves such as walking towards your car or positioning the keys to start the engine. Likewise, losing the synchronized tasks of your eyes, hands, and feet can seriously impact your ability to react in a given situation.

4. Concentration

Even the smallest amount of alcohol can impair one’s ability to concentrate on tasks that involve driving. Hence, it only leaves you concentrating on a single movement.

Driving involves a lot of movements and requires you to focus on multiple tasks at once. This includes speed, vehicle position, and other vehicles on the road. A collision may happen once you lose concentration on the road. Most traffic offenses result from a distracted drunk driver.

5. Vision

Alcoholic beverages can weaken eye muscle function, reduce eye movement and overall vision. These changes could result in blurred vision. Also, alcohol can impair color perception and night vision. Studies reveal that drunk drivers are more inclined to focus on a single detail for a longer time. Thus, one becomes unaware of vital information.

Moreover, alcohol can negate your ability to estimate depth and distance. Impaired color perception and blurred vision are common setbacks for drunk drivers.

6. Tracking

Drunk driving decreases the capacity to judge the position of a car on the road, location and movements of other vehicles, road signs, and center lines.

7. Reaction Time

Alcohol slows down your reflexes which weaken the ability to react rapidly to changing situations. Studies show that drunk drivers react slowly compared to when they were sober. Because of your impeded cognizance and coordination, your response time may decrease by about 15 to 25 percent. Decreased reaction time may cause accidents and casualties including injuries or fatalities.

Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is an Offense

Driving while intoxicated, or widely known as driving under the influence (DUI) is a crime or offense that involves driving a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs or alcohol. Yes, this includes prescription drugs.

There are plenty of laws that particularly target intoxicated drivers. About 33% of the United States embrace the principle of forbidding any presence of prohibited substances in a driver’s system while manipulating a motor vehicle.

Moreover, conviction of DUI of alcohol can affect your life in ways unimaginable. For instance, you may lose your job, higher insurance rates, financial problems, personal embarrassment, and possible imprisonment.

Drunk driving can lead to so many consequences that are comprehensive. Also, the effects not only affect impaired drivers, but also many others. It may help to consult a lawyer, such as those found here, in order to learn more about the impact of drunk driving especially if an accident happens because of this.


If you or someone else has consumed alcohol and got behind the wheel, never allow them to put the key in the ignition. Driving skills are very crucial and should never, under any circumstances, be impaired by alcoholic beverages.


Irene Wall

Irene Wall has been writing about law for more than a decade. She writes pieces on various law topics that she hopes could help the common reader with their concerns. She enjoys playing basketball with her sons during her free time




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