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Drugs and Alcohol


Drugs and Alcohol

Drugs and alcohol affect the body in a variety of ways. Taking drugs and drinking alcohol at a young age can be harmful to your health, and often times are more dangerous for children and teens with bleeding disorders.

  • Drugs and alcohol can impair your judgment and coordination, blur vision, and slow reaction time. Moreover, if you do get hurt, you're less able to help yourself.
    • You may have difficulty seeking medical attention. You may not remember who to call or your list of important phone numbers. You may not be able to explain your condition to others or to medical personnel. If they don't know you have a bleeding problem, they won't know how to take care of you properly.
    • Imagine how difficult it would be to self-infuse when you're less coordinated and your reflexes are slow. Ouch!
    • Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it causes the body to lose water. This can lead to dehydration, which means your body looses too much fluid, mainly water. Being dehydrated makes finding a vein a chore and a real pain. Double ouch!
  • There are the obvious dangers when using illegal drugs and drinking too much alcohol. These can include injury, either from loss of balance or consciousness.
    • Being drunk or high can weaken inhibitions and judgment and can lead to risky behavior like fighting and dangerous stunts.
    • Drinking and driving is a crime and is very dangerous. You could end up in a car accident, which could greatly increase your risk of injury and severe bleeding.
  • Similar to aspirin, even drinking a small amount of alcohol can affect blood clotting, taking on the role of a blood thinner.
    • If you have a bleeding disorder, drinking alcohol worsens the body's ability to form clots and stop bleeding.
    • Interactions between drugs, including bleeding disorder medications, may be unknown and could be harmful and even life threatening.
  • Alcohol is a depressant drug and can intensify feelings of depression and suicide.
  • Alcohol abuse can damage your liver. If you have a virus such as hepatitis C or are HIV-positive and are taking antiretroviral drugs, you're at an increased risk of severe liver damage.

Don't give in to pressure from peers—and don't put pressure on others—to use drugs or alcohol.

Everyone has a right to make his or her own decisions.