Binge Drinking and Adolescent Brains

Binge drinking is defined as consuming five or more drinks in two-hour period for men, or four or more drinks in a two-hour period for women. Adults who binge drink are at greater risk for increased violence, accidental injuries and death, impaired memory, increased risk for heart disease, and other chronic conditions. Less is known about the effects of binge-drinking on the brains of adolescents. Researchers at the University of Buffalo have published a study that’s found that even low and moderate levels of alcohol consumption can significantly impact the brain function of adolescents. The study found that all levels of alcohol consumption — low, moderate and high — decreased blood glucose metabolism in the primary somatosensory cortex and visual cortex, which are key to processing sensory and visual information, as well as executing motor functions. We need to watch over our kids and warn them about the physical, legal, and spiritual issues related to alcohol consumption.