The winter holidays are rapidly approaching. For most people, that means an increase in stress, as work projects have to balance against hard end-of-year deadlines. It’s also the time of year in which we see a serious uptick in parties — whether with coworkers, friends, or family members — to celebrate the myriad holidays that crop up between Halloween and the new year. Between the stress and the excitement, Americans will double their usual alcohol consumption during the last two months of the year. 

Of course, with such a dramatic increase in drinking, the rate of DUI arrests and convictions also goes up. If you or a loved one has been charged with driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated in Bend, OR, or the surrounding areas, get help from an experienced DUI attorney. Connect with The Donahue Law Firm for serious, individualized representation during your DUI proceedings. Also, keep these tips in mind to help you avoid a DUI and stay safe this holiday season: 

Stay Home! 

If you know you’re going to drink this holiday season, the best way to avoid a DUI is to not even leave the house. Instead of going out, offer to host holiday get-togethers at your home. This comes with an added financial benefit because buying drinks at a bar or restaurant can get expensive pretty quickly. Go online and find a fun cocktail recipe or maybe indulge in that bottle of wine you’ve been wanting to try, and stay in to celebrate this season. 

Watch What You Eat

Of course, we recognize that it’s really not realistic to suggest that you host every holiday party in your home. Company parties and bigger get-togethers are hard to fit in the average home, after all, and most of us don’t want to host that many parties anyway. If you are going out to a party, the best thing you can do is take care of yourself well. One of the roughest things you can do is drink on an empty stomach, so make sure you’re enjoying plenty of party snacks! Most importantly, put some food in your system before you grab your first drink. It’s also a great idea to keep nibbling between drinks as a way to slow yourself down and to slow down your body’s absorption of alcohol. 

Make Sure to Hydrate

Along with eating, another big thing you can do to help is to alternate alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic drinks, especially water. This will help prevent a spike in intoxication that could take a party from fun to awful. However, you are still drinking alcohol, so even if you don’t feel the effects as strongly, you should never drive after you’ve been drinking. 

Plan for Transportation Beforehand

One of the best ways to make sure you don’t get behind the wheel of your car after drinking is to have a solid plan in place before you grab your first drink. Plan to have someone in your group serve as the designated driver and carpool, use public transportation, or set aside some cash for a taxi/Uber/Lyft. It may surprise you to learn, but you can even be charged with a DUI on a bicycle, so give that option a miss, as well. 

Choose Your Drinks Wisely

The other thing that can make a big difference is understanding the alcohol content of what you choose to drink. You can read up on that in our previous blog post, but the basics are that drinks like beer and wine have a much lower alcohol content per volume than mixed drinks made with distilled spirits like rum or vodka. If you want to drink a higher quantity, choose options with a lower alcohol content. 

If you have been charged with a DUI or DWI, get help from an experienced, local DUI attorney. Call The Donahue Law Firm today to schedule your consultation.