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Alcohol, drugs and substance misuse

The national advice about responsible drinking for both men and woman is to drink no more than 14 units a week and to spread these units evenly over three or more days. 

Alcohol unit guidelines

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Men and women are advised to drink no more than 14 units per week. Spread the 14 units across the week, try to have at least three days off. 

14 units is roughly the same as either:

  • Five pints of beer or lager


  • Five pints of standard cider


  • Six 'normal' glasses of wine


  • Seven double measures of spirits

The type of illnesses you may develop after 10 to 20 years of regularly drinking more than 14 units a week could include cancers of the mouth, throat or breast; heart diseas; strokes; liver disease; brain damage or damage to the nervous system. 

The effects of alcohol on your health will depend on how much you drink and so the less you drink, the lower your health risks. 

Beware the next morning

You could be over the legal limit many hours after your last drink, even if it's the next morning. Sleep, coffee and cold showers don't help to sober you up - time is the only way to get alcohol out of your system. 

Driving or attempting to drive while above the legal limit or unfit through drink could lead to: Six months' imprisonment, an unlimited fine, a driving ban for atleast one year (three years if convicted twice in 10 years).

For more information on the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol visit: 

The morning after calculator will help you calculate roughly when it will be safe for you to drive the morning after drinking alcohol. 

If you would like to discuss alcohol or any drug issues in more depth or if you think you may need help, support or treatment for yourself or someone else, please contact Addaction Cornwall.