Drinking and College Students: When Is It a Problem? | The Village Family Service Center

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Drinking and College Students: When Is It a Problem?

Friday, July 10, 2020
College Drinking

College is a time for memories to be made. You might move away from home, you have more independence than ever, and you are embarking on a new stage in life that will help you choose a path that makes you happy. You might join clubs, make friends across campus and in your residence hall, or you have a job on campus and immerse yourself in your classes.

When you turn 21, you may start to drink recreationally with friends. For many, drinking habits don’t cease when school lets out for the summer. How do you know when your drinking habits have turned into a problem?

What is Binge Drinking?

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), binge drinking can be defined as consuming an excessive amount of alcohol. This looks like drinking four or more drinks for women, or five or more drinks for men, in the span of two hours. According to the Alcohol Addiction Center, if you partake in binge drinking five or more times a month, you may have a substance use disorder. Binge drinking patterns can intensify over time, and your drinking may begin to negatively affect your life.

Binge drinking is often considered “normal” because it is usually done in social settings or is considered a way to celebrate the end of a long week. According to a 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 36.9 percent of college students engage in binge drinking.

What can Binge Drinking lead to?

  • Low self-esteem

  • Anxiety and Depression

  • Alcohol poisoning

  • A struggle in balancing your priorities

  • Liver damage

What now?

Remember that you are not alone. If you think you might have a drinking problem, reach out to a friend or loved one. Lean on your support system and open up the conversation about what you're struggling with. 

First Step Recovery can help. If you are worried that your alcohol consumption is getting out of hand, call us at 701-451-4900 today to find out about education and treatment options, or contact us online.