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What role can alcohol play in starting bar fights?

When you step into a bar, you likely just want to sit down and enjoy a drink, perhaps with some friends or just to be alone. Getting into a fight is probably not on your mind. However, sometimes an alcoholic beverage brings out angry feelings, leading to harsh words and thrown punches.

Since a bar fight may result in assault charges, it could benefit you to know how to stay out of one. According to Psychology Today, alcohol assumption can risk violence in some people depending on their personality and alcohol tolerance.

Alcohol effects on the brain

Your prefrontal cortex is the area of the brain that manages your emotions, helping you to know when to act and when to restrain yourself. The prefrontal cortex also handles your ability to solve problems and exercise judgment.

Since alcohol can interfere with the functioning of your prefrontal cortex, you will probably have a harder time controlling how you feel. If events lead to a possible confrontation with another bar patron, you may have problems understanding how to get out of the situation without violence.

Redirection of negative emotions

While drinking alcohol may distract you from unpleasant events in your life, an alcoholic drink does not cause negative emotions to go away. In fact, alcohol can cause those feelings to emerge.

You might just sit at your table and voice opinions you would not say out loud. However, if your words or actions provoke another person, the alcoholic effects may make you think you can easily win a fight, particularly if the individual seems weaker than the real target of your anger.

Know your consumption limits

Not all people who enjoy a drink or two engage in rash or violent behavior. However, it is important to know your limits when it comes to alcohol. You might know when you have had enough to drink and walk away from a bad situation.