The Huddle

Under the Influence: Alcohol and Athletes

Posted: 09-23-2011 | Categories: LHSCA, Administrators, Parents & Students

Under the Influence: Alcohol and Athletes

We all know that it is illegal to drink alcohol if you’re under 21 years of age, but studies show that over 75% of teens have tried it at least once.  Hollywood glams up drinking and makes it seem like a cool thing to do, but have you ever stopped to think about the short and long term affects underage drinking could have on you ? 

Let’s start at the very beginning…do you really know what alcohol is?  It’s not just some fizzy drink in a fancy cup.  Alcohol is a depressant – something that slows down your central nervous system.  Think of it this way: Your brain is the boss and it tells your body what to do.  Alcohol is a funny mixture that slows your brain down making your body slow down as well.  It changes the way you think, feel, see, and even react.  Depending on how much alcohol you consume, determines how much it will affect you. 

Your brain and body are still developing even in high school and alcohol can be detrimental to that growth.  This is why the legal drinking age in the U.S. is 21…it’s for your own good!  Some short term effects on your body from alcohol can include an upset stomach, diarrhea, headaches, insomnia, and delayed reactions.  These aren’t exactly things you want to be dealing with when trying to beat your opponent during a game so why even put yourself in that position?  However, these aren’t the worst things that can happen when you drink alcohol.  Some long term effects drinking can have on your body are high blood pressure, heart failure, liver damage, and depression! 

We’re not trying to scare you away from drinking alcohol (once you’re 21 of course!) or saying that having a drink is a bad thing.  It’s just important to know the facts about alcohol and how it affects you so that you can make an informed decision.  However, that’s not anything you have to worry about for at least a few more years so, the next time you’re tempted to drink…just think of how you’re slowing the boss down and reach for a soda instead!

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