Alcohol depresses nerves that control involuntary actions such as breathing and the gag reflex, which prevents choking. Someone who drinks a fatal dose of alcohol will eventually stop breathing. Even if someone survives an alcohol overdose, he or she can suffer irreversible brain damage. Rapid binge drinking (which often happens on a bet or a dare) is especially dangerous because the victim can drink a fatal dose before losing consciousness.

  1. mental confusion
  2. stupor
  3. coma
  4. the person cannot be roused
  5. vomiting
  6. seizures
  7. slow breathing (fewer than 8 breaths a minute)
  8. irregular breathing (10 seconds or more between breaths)
  9. hypothermia (low body temperature)
  10. bluish skin color
  11. paleness