It’s rare to attend a social event that doesn’t involve alcohol. Although having a few drinks with family and friends is fine, it is important to understand the risks that come with drinking alcohol so you can avoid overindulging.
Unfortunately, honest people make mistakes, and if you are facing DUI charges in Florida, contact Michael D. Leader. Mr. Leader is a DUI defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale who will evaluate your case and aggressively defend your interests. Call 954-523-2020 today to schedule a consultation with Leader & Leader P.A. Mr. Leader has somewhat unique background, training and a great deal of experience in the area of DUI having worked as an Assistant State Attorney prosecuting these cases and then being recruited by what was once the most preeminent DUI defense firm the country. Mr. Leader has truly dedicated his career to the art of fighting DUI cases successfully.
Here is a brief overview of how the body metabolizes alcohol:
How Does Alcohol Affect the Central Nervous System?
As a depressant, alcohol slows down the processes of the central nervous system. As Brown University explains as part of its health promotion program, drinking alcohol causes slower reaction time and poor coordination. It is particularly dangerous to combine alcohol with other CNS (central nervous system) depressants such as tranquilizers and sleeping pills.
After a person swallows alcohol, it enters the digestive tract. Approximately 20 percent of the alcohol gets absorbed by blood vessels within the stomach. Blood vessels in the intestine absorb the remaining 80 percent and carry the alcohol to the liver via the blood stream. Due to how and where alcohol absorption takes place, the time you ate food relative to the time of drinking can profoundly impact the absorption and may be an important issue in your defense many attorneys completely overlook.
What Is the Liver’s Role in Metabolizing Alcohol?
When alcohol reaches the liver, enzymes begin to break it down so the body can expel it naturally. Each person’s liver metabolizes alcohol at a different rate. Several factors can affect this rate including gender, overall health, weight and age.
For most people, it takes approximately one hour for the liver to process 1 ounce of alcohol. So if you drink more than 1 ounce of alcohol in an hour, it will start to build up in your body, thus increasing your blood alcohol level, which could last for several hours.
In general, a person’s BAC will increase to .015 after consuming 1 ounce of alcohol. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, DUI is an offense that is “proved by impairment of normal faculties or unlawful blood alcohol or breath alcohol level of .08 or above.” If the driver is younger than 21, he or she can be detained “with an alcohol level .02 or above.” You can still be charged if there is no reading or if you give a sample and are a .05 or higher. The State only gets the presumption of impairment at .08 but can charge you at a lower result or in the case of a refusal as noted above.
How Much Is Too Much?
It is pointless to understand how fast the liver metabolizes alcohol unless you know the amount of liquor in your drinks. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, a standard drink contains approximately 14 grams of pure alcohol. Examples include:
- 12 ounces of beer that is 5 percent alcohol;
- 5 ounces of wine that is 12 percent alcohol;
- Or 1.5 ounces of liquor that is 40 percent alcohol.
The problem is, there are no many craft beers available today that have varying alcohol content, many people drink outside of the home and do not pour their own drinks. As a result, they often do not know if it was a measured shot or much more. Furthermore, people tend to think in terms of cups, glasses, etc. regarding how many drinks they had as opposed to the actual alcohol content.
If Florida police arrested you for DUI, contact Leader & Leader P.A. As your Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyer, Michael D. Leader will make himself available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to represent your interests. Call 954-523-2020 to schedule a consultation.