drunk drinking alcohol fishbowlWe know different drugs make us experience the world around us in very different ways — and their after effects are often nowhere near as pleasant as the immediate results they produce.

Alcohol, which two teams of addiction experts recently ranked as one of the five most addictive substances, can be especially dangerous when consumed in excess.

Here are some of the surprising ways alcohol affects our body and mind:

SEE ALSO: What alcohol does to your body and brain

DON’T MISS: 11 common myths about the brain that need to be smashed

As a depressant, alcohol puts the brakes on our brain’s “excitatory” messengers and amplifies our “inhibitory” ones, making us feel sluggish.

Source: Business Insider 2016

Within minutes, it starts to slow our thinking, breathing, and heart rate.

Source: Business Insider 2016

While these effects can be a pleasant and temporary side-effect of moderate drinking, which is defined by the NIAAA as up to 2 drinks a day for men and 1 for women, they can be devastating if you binge drink, or have 5 or more drinks (if you’re a man) in 2 hours or 4 or more drinks in that time period (if you’re a woman).

Source: National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

See the rest of the story at Business Insider