Fancy a tot of brandy? A pitcher of ale? Or how about a chilled pina colada?
All these drinks slowly, but surely, help us to relax, to put down our guard, and to ‘let our hair down’, so to speak. But why does this happen?
Alcohol notoriously slows a person’s brain into a pleasant (or not so pleasant) fuzziness. The cerebral cortex processes information more slowly, meaning that you might feel less sensitive to touch or to pain.
This is a trick, however, as your body still receives the damage, but your brain does not process the information quickly enough and so you don’t realise it’s happening.
So – being aware of all this, why do people choose to voluntarily get drunk?
– Shyness – many individuals do not feel comfortable or do not think that they have the necessary communication skills relevant to certain social situations. Alcohol helps these people to relax and be able to join in with others, more naturally.
– The Opposite Sex – certain people also find it very difficult to start up a conversation with members of the opposite sex, particularly if they fancy them. Alcohol lowers one’s inhibitions and fears, therefore chatting up someone you like becomes less insurmountable.
– To numb or ‘forget’ pain – this is one of the main reasons most people voluntarily and eagerly go out with the aim of getting drunk. Broken hearts, work-related issues, disappointments, stress, betrayals – these all seem to fade away as one drinks and makes merry – at least until the next morning.
Unfortunately, the ‘morning after’ wake-up call arrives for everyone, and we have to wake up. Bleary eyed and groaning, with a splitting headache, uncoordinated movements and a sour taste in our mouth, we open our sticky eyes to the glaring sunlight, wondering, or worse still remembering, what we did the night before.