Your first DUI was a stupid mistake. Maybe you did not think your blood alcohol level was that high, or maybe you thought you waited long enough after drinking before getting behind the wheel. Whatever the reason for your DUI, it is in the past.

However, it can be a learning experience and a motivation not to face DUI charges a second time. And as repeat offenders receive harsher penalties, you want to do whatever you can to avoid getting yourself into that situation again.

Recognize your weaknesses

Do you like to stop at a bar on your way home from work? Do you tend to go overboard at your neighbor’s backyard barbecue? Do you have physical or medical conditions that quicken alcohol absorption in your body? The first step in staying out of trouble is knowing what gets you there in the first place.

Prepare for alcohol consumption

If you know you will be drinking, make preparations to avoid driving afterward. Choose a designated driver, someone you know who with 100-percent certainty will stay sober. You can also call a taxi or other ride service. If you are at a friend’s or family member’s house, ask to spend the night and give the person your car keys.

Eat something with a high content of fat or protein before you drink to slow down absorption. Sip instead of guzzle, and take breaks between beverages.

Know your rights

Perhaps your first DUI did not go well because you did not know your rights, leading to you incriminating yourself. When Colorado police pull you over, you do not have to answer implicating questions or take any roadside tests. You also have the right for all evidence against you to be accurate and admissible in court. The police must have reason to arrest you. If, despite your best efforts, you receive a second DUI charge, call a DUI lawyer as soon as possible to start your case off right and avoid a conviction.