Binge drinking can be defined as an excessive amount of alcohol consumed in a short amount of time to achieve rapid intoxication. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the National Institute on Alcohol abuse and Alcoholism list out criteria for binge drinking. Binge drinking will be the consumption of alcohol in a single timeframe, whereby the blood-alcohol content is raised to a level of 0.08. For men, this will be consuming five or more drinks within the hour, and for women, this will be consuming four or more drinks within the hour. A heavy alcohol user could be considered someone who binge drinks five or more times in any given month. Binge drinking does have the potential to lead to alcohol abuse, which can cause an alcohol dependency.
Binge drinking is a problem among those who are underage in the United States and those who are of age. A person can binge drink with beer, wine, or spirits, and what is consumed will be one factor with how quickly someone becomes intoxicated. The negative consequences attached to binge drinking include issues with performance at work, school, and other activities. People who binge drink will tend to be involved in more accidents, because of the effect of alcohol on physical and or cognitive functions. Relationships will tend to be more strained, resulting in higher levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. Binge drinking essentially is dangerous for both men and women and will lead to significant physical and mental health problems.