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Alcohol Is A Central Nervous System Depressant

Dayton DUI Attorney Charles Rowland > DUI Law  > Drugs & Alcohol  > Alcohol Is A Central Nervous System Depressant

Alcohol Is A Central Nervous System Depressant

Alcohol is classified as a Central Nervous System Depressant for its effects on the human body.  It is listed as such for purposes of DUI investigations in the 2013 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (hereinafter NHTSA) “DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing” Participant Guide. See NHTSA, HS 178 R5/13.  CNS Depressant type drugs (see below) slow down the operations of the brain, and usually depress the heartbeat, respiration, and many other processes controlled by the brain. The most familiar and ubiquitous Central Nervous System Depressant is alcohol.

Other Depressants of the Central Nervous System include:

• Barbiturates (such as Secobarbital (Seconal), and Pentobarbital (Luminal))
• Non-Barbiturates (GHB-gamma-hydroxybutyrate and Soma)
• Anti-Anxiety Tranquilizers (Such as Valium, Librium, Xanax, and Rohpynol)
• Anti-Depressants (such as Prozac and Elavil)
• Muscle relaxants and many other drugs (Soma)

Depressant drugs usually are taken orally, in the form of pills, capsules, liquids, etc.  In general, people under the influence of any CNS Depressant drugs look and act like people under the influence of alcohol.  General indicators of Central Nervous System Depressant include, but are not limited to the following types of behaviors:

• “Drunken” behavior and appearance
• Uncoordinated
• Drowsy
• Sluggish
• Disoriented
• Thick, slurred speech

Eye indicators of Central Nervous System Depressant influence are:

• Horizontal gaze nystagmus usually will be present
• Vertical nystagmus may be present (with high doses)
• Pupil size usually will not be effected, except that Methaqualone and Soma may cause pupil dilation

Attorney Charles M. Rowland II dedicates his practice to defending the accused drunk driver in the Miami Valley and throughout Ohio.  He has the credentials and the experience to win your case and has made himself Dayton’s choice for drunk driving defense. Contact Charles Rowland by phone at (937) 318-1384 or toll-free at 1-888-ROWLAND (888-769-5263). If you need assistance after hours, call the 24/7 DUI Hotline at (937) 776-2671.

Charles Rowland


Charles M. Rowland II has been representing the accused drunk driver for over 20 years. Contact him at (937) 318-1384 if you find yourself facing a DUI (now called OVI) charge.

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