College Drinking Spikes Among Freshmen

college students drinking

When teens first make their way off to college, they are often filled with an overwhelming sense of liberation and freedom. They are taking their first steps in the world on their own, away from mom and dad. They are ready to try new things, taste life. One of those things that they will most likely be trying a lot of is alcohol.

Most adults understand that excessive drinking can lead to death caused by alcohol poisoning, as well as injuries, assaults, date rapes, arrests, academic failure and many other problems. Good luck convincing an 18-year-old freshman that college is not all about drinking, though.

Experts report that during the first few weeks of college freshman are much more likely to be harmed by something alcohol related. The likeliness is especially high in college freshmen, most of which feel that excessive drinking is typical behavior in college and so behave that way.

College Alcohol-Related Statistics

Parents of college students have good reason for worry. According to one study, 44 percent of college students binge drink often, many of which end up with alcohol-related injuries or accidents. Another report indicates that every year over 1,800 college students between the ages of 18 and 25 die due to alcohol-related incidents. Alcohol is also responsible for nearly 600,000 injuries, 700,000 assaults, and 100,000 rapes annually.

There are also lots of dollars being spent due to alcohol on campus. Each year, for every college of about 40,000 students, emergency rooms are spending $500,000 on alcohol-related injuries and blackout victims.

One college with an enrollment of 59,000 students reported 679 students cited for alcohol violations. 49 were taken to the hospital for excessive drinking while another 29 were arrested for drunk driving. There are spikes in these activities at the beginning of each semester.

More on the Spike

Experts conducted a survey on 77,000 college freshmen coming onto their campuses for the first time. It was found that not only were they drinking more in the fall than in the summer, but that they were also drinking more in a shorter period of time.
It was found that generally freshmen generally shifted up one category. That is, non-drinkers became light drinkers and light drinkers became binge drinkers. In fact, it was found that only 8 percent were heavy drinkers at the beginning of summer and that the number grew to 28 percent heavy drinkers by the end of fall.

Parents Can Help By Talking to Their Kids

Studies have shown that parents talking to their kids about these dangers can greatly reduce the chance that your child will become one of those statistics. It is an important thing to get involved with your kids on this subject rather than let them fend for themselves. Simply having honest simple communication with real information on the dangers and side effects of most drugs can help. Using videos is also a good tool or even having your son or daughter speak to someone who struggled with a substance abuse problem. The more information and communication amongst family members the less of a chance that your child will start down the road to drug abuse and addiction.

If you have a son or daughter who is already struggling with alcohol abuse, you can contact Narconon International for advice or any of our residential treatment programs. We are professionals that help thousands of people yearly and we can answer any questions that you may have to help you or a loved one recover.



Sue Birkenshaw

Sue has worked in the addiction field with the Narconon network for three decades. She has developed and administered drug prevention programs worldwide and worked with numerous drug rehabilitation centers over the years. Sue is also a fine artist and painter, who enjoys traveling the world which continues to provide unlimited inspiration for her work. You can follow Sue on Twitter, or connect with her on LinkedIn.