Alcohol Misuse Policy: Appendix B â€“ Guidance in the event of alcohol poisoning
Alcohol poisoning occurs when someone has consumed toxic levels of alcohol over a short period of time. In the most severe cases, alcohol poisoning can lead to coma, brain damage and can even be fatal.
The signs and symptoms of alcohol poisoning include:
- severely slurred speech
- loss of co-ordination
- regular or slow breathing
- hypothermia (pale or blue-tinged skin caused by low body temperature)
- stupor (being conscious but unresponsive)
- passing out and being unconscious
When to seek medical help
If you suspect a fellow student may have alcohol poisoning and they are in College accommodation, contact the Portersâ€™ Lodge immediately for help. If they are not in College, dial 999 immediately to request an ambulance. While you're waiting:
- try to keep them sitting up and awake
- if they've passed out, lie them on their side in the and check they're breathing properly
- keep them warm
- stay with them and monitor their symptoms
Never leave a person alone to 'sleep it off'. The level of alcohol in a person's blood can continue to rise for up to 30-40 minutes after their last drink. This can cause their symptoms to suddenly become much more severe. You also shouldn't give them coffee or any more alcohol, put them under a cold shower or walk them around. These won't help someone 'sober up' and may even be dangerous.