Although drinking alcoholic beverages is legal for those 21 years and older in the United States, alcohol is a dangerous drug when misused or abused by those of any age. One of the most commonly used drugs among teens and adults, alcohol affects areas of the brain that influence pleasure, impulses, and coordination. Though moderate, social use of alcohol can have a beneficial effect on health, drinking to excess can lead to headaches, nausea, severe memory loss, or even death from alcohol poisoning or accidents. Long-term abuse of alcohol has devastating effects on one's health and can be fatal to the user. Alcohol explains all sides of using this powerful social lubricant.