“BAC” stands for blood alcohol concentration (BAC). This is the amount of alcohol in your body measured by the weight of alcohol in your bloodstream.

Alcohol is absorbed through the walls of your stomach first, the small intestine, the bloodstream, and your brain. It doesn’t take long for your body to absorb alcohol and will typically show up in your bloodstream within 30 to 70 minutes after a drink.

Your BAC is what police officers measure with a breathalyzer test if they suspect you have been drinking.

How Long Does it Take for Your BAC to Return to Normal?

Alcohol steadily decreases a person’s ability to drive a vehicle safely. The most important takeaway is that your brain and bloodstream need little alcohol to affect your BAC and exceed the legal limit.

Depending on the number of alcoholic drinks you consume, it could take approximately five to 18 hours for your body to metabolize the alcohol and get back correctly. There is no fast or short way to sober up other than sleeping off the alcohol and allowing your body to rid of it naturally.

Will I Always Know if My BAC is Too High?

Part of the danger of alcohol is that you might not feel the effects immediately and decide to drive home. This does not mean that you are safe to go; if your BAC is measured, it could result in a driving under the influence (DUI) charge.

Alcohol is absorbed the same way, though certain factors influence how quickly the effects, including gender and weight, play a role. After one drink, you might feel nothing at all or slightly relaxed after one drink, while signs are more visible after a few drinks.

Having one or two drinks in a short time is where you have to be careful as you might not physically see the effects.

What Affects my BAC?

All types of alcohol—wine, spirits, and beer—affect your BAC. Adding drugs can further impair your abilities to drive and increase your BAC. As your body absorbs alcohol quickly, the amount of alcohol you consume in a specific period impacts your overall BAC. In short, the more drinks you have, the higher your BAC.

Other factors such as gender and weight play a role in a person’s BAC. Women tend to have more alcohol in their blood as they have a higher body fat percentage than men. A heavier person tends to carry more water weight and will take slightly more time to experience the effects of alcohol.

If you were charged with a DUI, contact our legal team as soon as possible to get representation for your case. Call: (302) 678-8700.