Don’t let a good time ruin a lifetime: Rethink your drinking this holiday season

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The holidays are our chance to relax, unwind, and enjoy time with loved ones. For many, this means having a few drinks. For some, those few turn into several and those several turn into a problem.

DUIs and other negative, alcohol-related events, like arrests, accidents, and injuries peak around the holidays. Sweetwater County Prevention Coalition and Southwest Counseling Service want you to enjoy this season without putting yourselves or others at risk. Rethinking Drinking can help. The website, https://www.rethinkingdrinking.niaaa.nih.gov/, guides you to rethink your drinking patterns and adjust them to be safer and healthier. In the “How much is too much?” section, you can learn what a standard drink is, which kinds of drinking patterns are harmful, and what types of harm alcohol can cause.

If you find you have some problematic drinking patterns, or you want to have a little more control over your drinking, the “Thinking about a change” section has tips for recognizing problems with alcohol and cutting down or quitting. There are also “Tools” to help you understand different aspects of your drinking. Some helpful ones for the holiday season include: · “Building your drink refusal skills”: You don’t have to take that fifth shot just because everyone else is. During holiday gatherings, it can be difficult to avoid overconsuming when there is social pressure from friends and family to drink. This page helps you build refusal skills for those situations.

  • The “Cocktail content calculator”: You may be surprised to find that your favorite cocktail can count for much more than one standard drink. Binge drinking (4+ standard drinks in a day for a woman, 5+ for a man) and heavy drinking (8+ standard drinks in a week for a woman, 15+ for a man) drastically increase the chances of negative consequences. Plan how many you’ll have in advance and stick to it.
  • The “Alcohol calorie calculator”: If you’re watching your waistline this holiday season, alcohol can add just as many pounds as grandma’s cooking. Keep it in check with this tool.
  • The “Alcohol spending calculator”: You already spent a ton on gifts, don’t let alcohol break the bank. This calculator will help you see how much alcohol is costing you.
  • The “Blood alcohol content (BAC) calculator”: The BAC limit for driving in Wyoming is 0.08%. Use this to gauge when to call it quits if you plan on getting behind the wheel.

Don’t let a good time ruin a lifetime. Use the free tools on Rethinking Drinking to help you stay safe and healthy this holiday season.


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