Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) measures how much alcohol is in your blood, according to the amount of alcohol consumed over a given period. Although you can be charged with a DUI/OVI in Ohio for having a BAC of at least .08 percent, you still can be charged with drunk driving if any amount of alcohol impairs your ability to safely operate a vehicle.
To avoid going over the legal limit or getting too inebriated, many people count drinks and guess their BAC level. However, it is imperative to understand all the variables that influence BAC.
The following are the common factors that affect your BAC:
- Weight – The less you weigh, the less water you have in your body to dilute the intoxicating effects of alcohol. That is why heavier individuals appear more sober than their lighter counterparts when they consume the same amount of alcohol.
- Gender – Since men have more muscle and less body fat compared to women, the latter will have a higher BAC if they consume the same amount of alcohol. In addition, women have less dehydrogenase—an enzyme that breaks down alcohol in the stomach—compared to men, which results in a higher BAC compared to a man with the same weight.
- Age – The older you get, the more pronounced the intoxicating effects of alcohol will become.
- Food – Consuming alcohol on an empty stomach can lead to a higher BAC compared to another person who had eaten prior to drinking. Food slows down alcohol that is being absorbed in your bloodstream and remains in your stomach longer.
- How quickly you consume alcohol – The faster you drink alcohol, the quicker your BAC will increase.
- The strength of your drink – The more alcohol a beverage contains, the more alcohol will enter your bloodstream and increase your BAC.
- Medications – Cough medicines, anti-depressants, and even aspirin can amplify the effects of alcohol on your body.
- Stress and fatigue – The effects of alcohol will become more pronounced whenever you are feeling tired or stress out.
If you have been charged with a DUI in Cleveland, contact Patituce & Associates today at (440) 709-8088 and schedule a free consultation.