Can You Drink Alcohol if You Have a Concussion?

Drink Alcohol if You Have a Concussion?

Is your head buzzing? Do you have that persistent headache that is just nagging at you? You might think that a simple Tylenol or a glass of cold, cold beer can fix it, but what if that headache is not just another buzz but something else? 

People usually just ignore things like a persistent and nagging headache, small traces of nausea and dizziness, temporary cases of loss of balance, a feeling of being dazed, and a sudden disturbance in vision.

They might not be so wrong since these are the most common illnesses that happen to anyone daily, but what people do not consider is what caused them in the first place because it could be a screaming sign of a bad concussion. A silent killer in the making is what the people in the medical field and the general public are calling a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or concussion. 

Discussion about Concussion

Drink Alcohol if You Have a Concussion?

Most of you right now might know the word concussion through the 2015 movie streaming a famous Streaming Platform entitled Concussion starring Will Smith, which aptly tackles talks and educates the general public about what happens when a person, or in this case, a professional football player, gets repeatedly bashed in the head and the drawbacks it has on these players and their life and health. 

However, to be more specific, the topic of our discussion today is the basics of a concussion. A concussion, by definition, is a sudden and silent loss of a person’s mental capacity for a short period. This is often caused by an incredible injury or blunt force trauma to the head and is most of the time known as a traumatic brain injury or TBI, as the injury does not happen to the cranium or skull but a concussion happens to the brain more specifically.

This injury could be through an accident like a car crash, through playing sports like football where there are a lot of bodies slamming against each other, just like in the movie, or through a fight with someone ending up getting a beating.

All of these and more can be the causes of a concussion, and the most common symptoms of a concussion are sudden loss of consciousness just right after the trauma to the head, temporary memory loss accompanied by temporary disturbance and loss of vision, and a short period of a “blank-slate” or being unable to answer questions immediately and just staring blankly in space. 

Three Types  of a Concussion

Drink Alcohol if You Have a Concussion?

There are three known Grades of a Concussion; namely, Grade 1 or a mild concussion, Grade 2 or a moderate concussion, and lastly, Grade 3 or a severe concussion. In a way, they could also be called degrees of concussion. Grade 1, or a mild concussion, is described as the least dangerous of the three as it lasts only approximately around 10-15 minutes, and the victim remains conscious.

A Grade 2 or moderate concussion involves symptoms that seem to persist for more than 15 minutes or so, but the victim is still conscious, while a Grade 3 or severe concussion entails all of the two former Grades mentioned; the only difference is that the victim has lost consciousness already.

Hands down, the severe kind of concussion is the most dangerous kind of the three grades or types, as victims sometimes fall into an uncertain coma or die due to complications like internal bleeding and swelling in the brain. 

Alcohol and Concussion

At this juncture, it would be obvious that if a person is suffering from a severe concussion, he or she will not be able to drink, let alone speak, since he or she is already unconscious. That is why drinking alcohol is definitely out of the question unless any of you know someone unconscious and still able to drink alcohol or anything orally that would exist in a world full of impossibles. Anyway, when it comes to drinking alcohol, some regulations are placed for the safety of everyone. 

Any alcoholic beverage, when consumed in excess, can have several unwanted effects on the body. Some of them are elevated blood pressure that can lead to a stroke, digestive and liver problems, and Cancer. And while every person has a threshold when it comes to getting drunk, it is still not a good idea to drink alcohol when you are suffering from something physically, mentally, and medically. 

That is why it might not be such a good idea to drink alcohol, especially if you are suffering from a recent mild to moderate concussion, as it is a condition that is a cause for medical concern as well. Slurred speech and elevated blood pressure can be detrimental to the body while it is trying to recover from a traumatic brain or head injury. 

Drinking while having a concussion can slow down the speed and capacity at which the body can send help to the parts, namely the brain or head, that have sustained an injury to repair damages. The reason is that when you drink alcohol, your body also has to work to get it out of your system. Generally speaking, it’s like putting your body into technical overtime, and the human body also has its limits. 

Some studies also have found that people with a traumatic brain injury or concussion are more susceptible to seizures, especially if they engage in drinking alcohol. Another leading organization in the medical field that puts the combination of a concussion and drinking alcohol in an undesirable category together is the Center for Disease Control and Prevention which states that drinking alcohol while having a concussion will only intensify possible injuries sustained during the head injury.

It is also imperative to take note that a person suffering from a mild or moderate concussion should not drink alcohol, as the after-effects of drinking alcohol are believed to magnify problems in cognitive functions as well as intensify the visible symptoms of depression. 


No matter what sort of occasion there may be or no matter what sort of sadness and impending loneliness and depression you have to drown out through drinking alcohol, it is still not worth risking your health and life, especially if you are already suffering from a mild or moderate concussion. That drink just might be your last; hence, drink carefully, or better yet, do not drink at all. 

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