You know how we’ve all heard “Don’t swim right after you eat” and other phrases like that? Some of us are skeptical, but there are safety reasons behind it—such as cramps which could cause you to drown. In concealed carry, there are the same cautionary phrases, some of which are even laws prohibiting certain actions while carrying—all of which to keep you and others safe. The first on this list is one of the latter. There are five big NO-NO’s that don’t mix, and shouldn’t, with concealed carry.


1. Alcohol

If you’re a veteran of CC, then you already know it is prohibited by law to drink while concealed carrying. In fact, in some states (and even divided again by jurisdiction) that it is illegal to carry a weapon into an establishment that serves/sells alcohol. Insert my plug about staying up to date on your states’ laws. I understand that some days you need to stop into your favorite establishment and drink a beer, occasionally. But if you drink, you shouldn’t be driving or carrying.


2. Judgement and Motor Skill Inhibiting Prescription Drugs

Your best bet is to check the bottle and even some of the side-effects of certain prescriptions. If the bottle reads “do not operate heavy machinery or drive” or “may cause dizziness” then you shouldn’t be carrying. Really, if you can’t drive your car, you don’t need to be carrying either.


3. Drugs

While I just discussed prescription medications, here I’m meaning drugs like marijuana, meth, heroin, and etc. Hear me out before you jump on me for lumping marijuana in with the other dangerous drugs in that list. I understand that marijuana is moving (on a state by state level) out of the Schedule I drug circle, but it can alter motor skills (and the others impair judgement). If you have a medical need for marijuana, understand that in a self-defense situation it can make your reflexes sluggish.


4. Insomnia

After about 48 hours without sleep, the mind and the body behave differently. Lack of sleep (all of you parents know this about your children after accidentally not putting them down for that afternoon nap) can cause irritability, drowsiness, altered judgement; then paranoia slow motor skills and sometimes even hallucinations.


5. Severe Emotional Distress

We all have times in our lives—the loss of loved ones, loss of a job, personal crises, heavy work-loads in school or career, illness—that are just too much. In these times, it’s important to take some time to process, rest, and take care of ourselves. Sometimes adding the responsibility of carrying concealed can amplify that distress. Don’t. Go to the doctor, talk to a professional, take time to heal, then when you’re ready—carry on.


As a handy rule, if it (whatever that is) impairs your judgement, reflexes and/or motor skills, then don’t mix it with concealed carry. Stay safe and stay armed, my friends.


Was there another no-no that I forgot to include in this list? Let me know in the comments.