Some of the slang names for alcohol are booze, sauce, brewskis, hooch, hard
stuff, and juice. Don't worry about trying to fit in or be cool when it comes
to drinking alcohol. Most teens aren't drinking alcohol. Drinking is not as
common or as "cool" as some people would like you to believe it is.
Alcohol is in drinks like beer, wine, liquor, wine coolers, whiskey,
liqueurs, and even some coffee drinks. If you are not sure whether the drink
you are going to have has alcohol in it, check the label. If there is alcohol
in the drink, it has to say so on the label—it's the law. If you are still not
sure or can't tell from the label, ask a trusted adult. Alcohol is really
unhealthy for our bodies. It is considered a central nervous system (CNS)
depressant. The main job of the CNS is to send signals throughout the body. For
example, the CNS tells you when to raise your hand in class or how to jump over
a hurdle. Our brains think of the actions it wants our bodies to do and sends
messages to that part of the body. When this system is slowed down by alcohol,
the body can't react as quickly to the messages the brain is sending. That is
why it is important for people not to drive after they drink alcohol.
Besides harming the central nervous system, alcohol can weaken our immune
system and make us more likely to get sick or develop diseases.
Here are the parts of my body that could be damaged by alcohol if I chose to
Drinking alcohol could cause your blood pressure to rise, increase your
heart rate, cause your heart to beat abnormally, and it could increase the size
of your heart. All of these things are bad for you. If you have an irregular
heartbeat, you won't be able to play sports or exercise as well as you normally
Drinking alcohol over a long period of time could cause stomach ulcers or
Drinking alcohol could cause diseases such as cirrhosis (pronounced
"sir-o-sis"), inflamed liver (hepatitis), or even cancer of the liver.
The liver is the largest organ in our body. Its job is to keep poisons like
germs and bacteria out of our blood. The liver also makes the protein that
causes our blood to clot, and clotting is what causes scabs to form and makes
us stop bleeding when we get a cut. We need our liver so we can stay healthy
and so our bodies stay clean. Cirrhosis is a disease that damages the liver. It
weakens the liver's ability to clot and keep our blood free from poisons and
bacteria. People can get cirrhosis in different ways, but drinking too much
alcohol is the most common way.
Drinking alcohol leads to a loss of coordination, poor judgment, slowed
reflexes, distorted vision, memory lapses, and even blackouts. This means
alcohol won't let you do the things you normally do that require coordination
and skill. You can't ride a bike, inline skate, play sports, or even walk in a