What Are The Signs of Alcohol Poisoning?
- Confusion, stupor
- Slow breathing (less than 8 breaths a minute)
- Irregular breathing
- Blue-tinged skin or pale skin
- Low body temperature (hypothermia)
- Unconsciousness ("passing out")
- Do NOT leave an unconscious person alone.
- Do NOT try to make the person vomit: they may choke on their own vomit or accidentally inhale vomit into their lungs, which could cause a fatal lung injury.
WHEN TO SEE A DOCTOR
If you suspect that someone has alcohol poisoning — even if you don't see the classic signs and symptoms — seek immediate medical care.
Be prepared to provide information. If you know, be sure to tell hospital or emergency personnel the kind and amount of alcohol the person ingested, and when.
- Even when someone is unconscious or has stopped drinking, alcohol continues to be released into the bloodstream and the level of alcohol in the body continues to rise.
- If the person is unconscious, breathing less than eight times a minute or has repeated, uncontrolled vomiting, call 911.
- If the person is conscious, call 800-222-1222. You will automatically be routed to your local poison control center. The staff at the poison control center or emergency call center can instruct you as to whether you should take the person directly to a hospital. All calls to poison control centers are confidential.
- Never assume that a person will "sleep off" alcohol poisoning.