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Consequences of alcohol use and a Louisiana DWI conviction

Understanding alcohol's effects can help Baton Rouge drivers make informed choices about getting behind the wheel of a car. Many drivers, who honestly believe they handle alcohol better than others, end up facing unexpected drunk driving charges. Ask an attorney or a defendant facing DWI charges: you don't want a criminal record or any other, very unpleasant consequences that follow a conviction.

Alcohol can feel like a stimulant. Alcohol actually reduces function by depressing the ability to do and feel things. The fired up feeling many drinkers feel comes from a loosening of inhibitions.

Not every person responds to alcohol in the same way, which creates the illusion some folks manage drinking better than others. Alcohol is an equal-opportunity drug. Your body's reacts to what you drink, how much alcohol you consume and how fast you drink -- gender, size, physical and emotional health and food intake also play roles.

Your body eliminates alcohol at its own pace, at about 0.015 percent of alcohol every hour. Despite what you may have heard or tried, nothing you do can rush the process. Impairment occurs before intoxication.

Your brain is affected within 20 minutes. That welcome relaxed feeling is your body letting down its guard -- reflexes, vision, skills, concentration, coordination and judgment.

The elated feeling that comes with alcohol use is never worth getting stopped, arrested and convicted. In Louisiana, a first-time DWI conviction can threaten driving privileges for up to a year. You could go to jail for up to six months, pay thousands of dollars in fines and court costs and be forced to live with a criminal record.

As harsh as Louisiana DWI laws are, judges understand some drivers misjudge alcohol's effects and make mistakes. A criminal defense attorney makes sure your rights are protected. A lawyer also works to reduce drunk driving charges or penalties, as far as possible.

Source: Driving-tests.org, "Class D&E Drivers Guide: Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles" Dec. 06, 2014

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