Safer drinking over the festive season

As party season gets underway, it can be tempting to indulge when you’re out with friends and family.

However, drinking too much might make your Christmas memorable for the wrong reasons and could put your health at risk.

Top 10 tips for safer drinking

  • Don’t lose your cool. Drinking heavily can increase your risk of being involved in confrontation and can impact on your relationships
  • Beware of drink spiking. Be vigilant and look out for your friends; if you’re worried, seek help.
  • Don’t drink and drivePlan your transport home in advance or choose a ‘designated driver’.
  • Mull it over. Drinking can lead you to act impulsively or take risks, such as having unprotected sex.
  • Avoid bingeing. If you’re out with a group, avoid buying drinks in “rounds” – this might encourage you to drink more than normal.
  • Keep warm. Alcohol can make you feel warmer than you are. In winter, this deceptive warm “flush” is quickly lost, drawing heat away from your body.
  • Stick together. If you notice that a friend is unsteady on their feet, stay with them – never leave friends to walk home alone.
  • Track your drinking.
  • Try a soft drink. Alternating soft drinks in between drinks will help you stay sober for longer.
  • Stay on your feet. Icy weather can make the ground slippy, risking falls if you’ve been drinking. If you feel unsteady, stop drinking and ask a friend for help.