Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:


Sixty seconds on . . . AA

BMJ 2020; 368 doi: (Published 13 March 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;368:m1056

Rapid Response:

Beware of Alcohol

Alcohol is an addictive depressant and social lubricant that tricks and traps us by creating the fleeting euphoria of relaxation and confidence, but the sustained sickness of anxiety and despair. The euphoria of relaxation and confidence, and the sickness of anxiety and despair, are opposites that reinforce each other: the euphoria blinds us to the sickness, and the sickness makes us crave the euphoria. Perversely but predictably, alcohol creates, aggravates, and perpetuates the very sickness of anxiety and despair that it falsely seems to cure, thus placing even social drinking in a bad light.

Competing interests: No competing interests

16 March 2020
Hugh Mann
New York, NY, USA