I want to know how much damage getting drunk does to my body.
Hi mate, thanks for asking us.
As a young person, your body is growing and developing in lots of ways, including your brain. Your brain keeps maturing until you are about 25 years old. That's why drinking alcohol affects young people more than adults and the damage can be permanent.
Drinking alcohol can damage 2 parts of the brain: the frontal lobe and the hippocampus. These parts of the brain are involved in memory and emotions.
Alcohol can stop you learning and remembering things. Regular use of alcohol slows down systems in your brain that are important for storing new information and makes it difficult to remember what you learn. Drinking alcohol when you are young can have a permanent effect on your ability to learn and remember things.
The changes to the brain when you are a teenager make you more at risk to the addictive actions of alcohol. Teenagers who start drinking before they are 15 are 5 times more likely to become addicted to it, compared to someone who doesn't start drinking until they're 21.
Teenagers who binge drink are also more likely to have depression than those who don't have an alcohol problem. Binge drinking means drinking heavily over a short period of time or drinking continuously over days or weeks.
Drinking alcohol, especially getting drunk, can also put you in situations that can be dangerous or embarrassing, such as having an accident or being involved in a fight. Alcohol can also cause other health problems, like damage to your liver and heart.
If you drink alcohol and are worried about it, you could talk to a friend or family member, a school counsellor or a doctor. You could also contact the Kids Helpline (details below), anonymously if you like.