College is the best of times and the worst of times. From all-nighters to ragers, the human body experiences exhaustion in many different ways. Overdoing it on the alcohol and binge drinking can physically exhaust your body and prevent your immune system from warding off disease. As back to school season approaches, it is important to teach your college aged children and peers about the dangers of excessive drinking, as it can cause early cirrhosis, alcohol dependence, and a fatal blood alcohol level.
Although there is increasing awareness around the subject of extreme drinking, binge drinking is present on campuses more than ever. According to New York Times Health, the last two decades have seen a staggering 40% of student populations that demonstrate binge drinking or alcoholic behavior. Aspects such as an unstructured schedule, distance from family, expectations, and a “party” atmosphere can put students and young adults at an immense risk for developing these sorts of behaviors. Binge drinking is the act of drinking much more than requires to get tipsy, and is a pattern defined by consuming alcohol that brings the blood alcohol concentration to levels above .08. In terms of drinks, this means about four drinks for women in two hours and five drinks for men. A standard drink is about 12 ounces of 5% beer, 5 ounces of 12% wine, or 1.5 ounces of 40% proof liquor, according to Mayo Clinic. But it is not always easy to adhere to these guidelines if a friend or bartender is pouring at their own discretion.
Besides the long term consequences of alcoholism, there are many immediate consequences you can experience. This includes a high risk of car crashes, drunk arrests, and predisposition for sexual assault due to inebriation. There is also the possibility for alcohol poisoning, which depending on the amount consumed, can quickly become deadly. There are thousands of cases of alcohol poisoning per year in college, and if it is not fatal, it can lead to brain damage, hypothermia, and irregular breathing. Those that have addictive personalities or compulsive behavior patterns may also run the risk of developing AUD, or Alcohol Use Disorder. It is a chronic relapsing cognitive condition that is defined by neurotic alcohol abuse, a loss of control, and a depressed state when not intoxicated. There are approximately 16 million adults in the U.S who have AUD, and nearly 20% of college students fit the criteria for an AUD diagnosis.
If you are a loved one demonstrates binge drinking patterns, it is worth consulting us at Asana Recovery as we frequently deal with those impacted by such behaviors. We understand that there is a loss of control in the ability to deal with irrational cravings, and we implement a multiple step treatment to getting you or one you love back on a road of sobriety. We also suggest attending AA meetings to supplement your progress and have an external support group. To receive a consultation on your best treatment possible, reach us at (949) 348- 4504.