Several commenters to my reports on drunk driving have been wondering just what a .08 blood alcohol concentration, the limit at which you're legally impaired, means when it comes to the effects on your body.
Here's what various BAC levels mean. BAC of .01-.029 the average individual appears normal, subtle effects can be detected with special tests.
BAC of .03-.059 sense of well-being, relaxation, talkativeness decreased inhibition. Alertness, judgment, coordination, concentration all impaired.
BAC of .06-.10 (This is the range where you are considered legally impaired) Blunted feelings, disinhibition, extroversion. The following are all impaired: Reflexes, reasoning, depth perception, distance acuity, peripheral vision, glare recovery, impaired sexual performance.
BAC of .11-.20 Over-expression, emotional swings, anger or sadness, boisterous. The following are impaired: Reaction time, gross motor control, staggering, slurred speech.
BAC of .21-.29 Stupor, loss of understanding, impaired sensations. The following are impaired: Severe motor impairment, loss of consciousness, memory blackout.
BAC of .30-0.39 Severe depression, unconsciousness, death possible. The following are impaired: Bladder function, breathing, heart rate.
BAC of .40 Unconsciousness, death possible. The following are impaired: Breathing, heart rate, brain damage.
There are many factors that may determine when an individual reaches the various BAC levels. Those factors include weight, sex, time and tolerance. While people may reach BAC levels at different times, they will all experience the same level of impairment when they reach those levels.