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Nearly all of us have a pretty good understanding of what happens when you consume more than two or three alcoholic beverages. In this unit we'll go beyond the general knowledge that most everyone already possesses regarding alcohol's effects, and look at how alcohol works, what its specific effects are, and how much actual alcohol you're consuming when having a beer, glass of wine, or mixed drink.
Prolonged, heavy use of alcohol can lead to alcohol addiction, commonly known as alcoholism. Apart from the many harmful side effects from heavy drinking, even the sudden cessation of long term, extensive alcohol intake has severe symptoms.
Ask the anybody to name all the depressant drugs they've heard of, and one is likely to hear heroin, methadone, Seconal, and other barbiturates. The one you may not hear, though, absolutely everyone knows what it is: alcohol.
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