Aims To investigate the relationship between adolescents' alcohol use and physical health. Design A total population, cross-sectional survey of adolescents, aged 13-19 years, attending secondary or high school in Nord-Trondelag County, Norway. 8,983 youths (91%) answered the Young-Hunt questionnaire in the 1995-1997 HUNT-survey. Method Self-reported data mainly analyzed by logistic regression models. Findings 80% of the respondents had tried alcohol, and 29% reported more than 10 intoxications. Ill health perception was associated with frequent alcohol intoxications. Tension symptoms had the closest relationship to frequency of intoxications in both genders. Girls that frequently used health services had frequent alcohol intoxications. Funding Central Norway Regional Health and the County Council of Nord-Trondelag. Conclusions There is a close association of physical health complaints and alcohol intoxication frequency in Norwegian teenagers. The study's limitations were noted.