Tanya has first hand experience, after a cheap, alcohol-fueled night placed her in an extremely dangerous situation
“All I can remember is someone shouting out call an ambulance. The next waking up in A&E alone with no phone, no money and no recollection of the night.” She said.
Factory worker Tanya, like the majority of young women enjoys going out drinking and enjoying herself at the weekend.
But on Friday 16th March, binge drinking on £1 sambuca shots left the 20-year-old alone and paralytic on the streets of Manchester.
“I can remember putting my make-up on that night thinking tonight’s going to be an enjoyable night. Little did I know I was going to end up in hospital alone having my stomach pumped.” She said.
Tanya hit the bars and clubs of Manchester celebrating a friends Birthday, which only meant one thing, the consumption of plenty of alcohol.
“It was a big night; my friend had turned 21 so the sambuca shots were flowing. I mean you can’t complain at £1 shots.”
After a lot of extremely cheap alcoholic drinks, the night went frightfully wrong.
Tanya lost her friends and ended up intoxicated and unaccompanied.
“As I was so intoxicated, I really don’t remember how I managed to lose my friends. It was freezing earlier in the night, but at that moment in time I can’t recall feeling cold, even in the little dress I was wearing, I was just gone.
“I remember falling on the pavement numerous times, but I didn’t actually know where I was, it was the first time I had been to that part of Manchester; I was clueless.” She said.
A passerby who had just finished work found Tanya in a heap unconscious a couple of streets down from the club where her friends had been.
“Luckily someone found me and called for an ambulance. I really don’t know what would have happened to me if not, and I dread to think what could have happened to me if someone with different intentions found me.
“My purse and phone had gone, I don’t know what happened to them, someone could have stole them whilst I was unconscious, or they could have fell out of my bag. I was left with only a useless lip-gloss.” She said.
Once Tanya arrived at the hospital, she had her stomach pumped and the doctors believed she had a mild case of hypothermia.
“I woke up very confused in the morning. I had no memory of what had happened and where I ended up, never mind where my friends had gone and why my purse and phone had vanished, I was devastated.” She added.
Statistics found on Drinkaware state around 40% of patients admitted to Accident and Emergency departments are diagnosed with alcohol-related injuries or illnesses, with younger people more likely to have an alcohol-related accident.
Dr Nick Sheron, a clinical hepatologist from the University of Southampton. Also a co-founder of the Alcohol Health Alliance, believes it’s fundamentally true, that alcohol can cause vulnerability.
“When under the influence, its fundamental, it does depend on sex, as male aggression and violence can occur.
“Women are more likely to be affected as a result of this. Statistics show 60% domestic related and 60-70 sexual assaults perpetrated on women is due to alcohol use. So yes drinking can put people in vulnerable situations.”
When asked about problems people face later in life from binge drinking, Dr Sheron said: “The earlier someone starts drinking alcohol, the more likely the person will run into trouble with alcohol, alcoholics for example.” He added.
Tanya believes that the low price drinks, as well as the normality of getting so intoxicated increases the likelihood of overdoing alcohol consumption, increases one’s vulnerability.
“I don’t think its just alcohol, I think it’s the amount one drinks that causes vulnerability. I can have a couple of glasses of wine and know exactly what I’m doing, its binge drinking and the need to get completely off your face every weekend which is the problem” She said.
“Waking up not remembering parts of your night, who you was with and where you were has become standard.
“Another factor is pre-drinking before a night out, this results in people already being drunk before they even get to the bars, then when you are faced with £1 shots its inevitable that you’re going to end up smashed.
“Alcohol is cheap.” She added.
A press release found on Home Office states how the governments have launched a new strategy to crack down on binge drinking and the trouble it causes.
“Actions set out in the strategy aim to stem the flow of cheap alcohol; ensuring for the first time alcohol is sold at a sensible and appropriate price.”
Introducing a minimum unit price for alcohol in shops will help tackle the cheap ‘pre-drinking’ that occurs before people even leave the house.
“I have certainly learnt from my experience, I now pace myself. I just hope people hear my story and realise the risks of binge drinking.” Tanya added.
There’s obviously a link in price and consumption, which needs changing to embark upon the alcohol crisis that we face in Britain. What do you think of the radical strategy? Should introducing a minimum price for alcohol be welcomed to deal with binge drinking?
Femalefirst Alexandra Ashton