Problem Of Drinking Amongst College Freshman Not Going Away

college students drinking

College symbolizes independence, higher education, widening horizons. But for a freshman crossing the campus for the first time, it can be intimidating. When the stress of the first semester gets to be too much, drinking appears to be the way out.

A recent study of 77,000 freshmen at the University of North Texas revealed that students tend to drink more coming into fall than in the summer, and they are inclined to drink more in a shorter period of time. Also, they seem to “move up” in categories–those who were non-drinkers start drinking; those who drank moderately become binge-drinkers.

Is It Clever Marketing

drinking at a party or nightclub

Nowadays, freshmen are given the impression of college life as one big party after another. So, of course, they enter school expecting it to be so. Movies and online pictures portray college as a place to binge drink, so isn’t it a case of “When in Rome…”?

Studies show that digital peer pressure has a large influence on drug use among young adults. With Facebook recently topping 1 billion users, is it any wonder that young Americans are influenced by what they see in social media? For freshmen seeing college behavior depicted online, drinking is just a way of life.

Dangers Of Excessive Alcohol Use

National surveys reveal that 44 percent of all college students binge drink. Many suffer blackouts at the hand of alcohol. Not only that, college drinking leads to nearly two thousand deaths among students between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five.

Accidents caused by alcohol are no light matter. Alcohol is the leading cause of automobile accidents and contributes to nearly 600,000 injuries, approximately 700,000 assaults and 97,000 cases of date rape on college campuses every year.

Alcohol poisoning can be fatal. Experts urge drinkers to call 911 immediately if someone passes out and can’t be roused because of binge drinking. Alcohol depresses natural reflexes, including the gag reflex, which can cause someone to choke on their own vomit. Other signs of alcohol poisoning include:

  • Mental confusion
  • Stupor
  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Slow breathing (fewer than eight per minute)
  • Irregular breathing
  • Hypothermia
  • Blue skin tone
  • Pale skin

If not treated immediately, alcohol poisoning can cause brain damage, heart failure, hypothermia, and death.

Is Alcohol A Gateway Drug

A significant number of heavy drug users say they started on alcohol. In fact, a recent study compared substance abuse rates between drinkers and non-drinkers, revealing that high school seniors who had tried alcohol at least once were thirteen times more likely to use cigarettes, sixteen times more likely to use marijuana and other narcotics, and thirteen times more likely to use cocaine.

Many believe that alcohol is one of the most harmful substances on the market–first and foremost because it is so readily available; and secondly, because its effects can creep up, causing addiction before the user knows it. And when one no longer feels the same effects from booze, he often turns to heavier drugs for the same high as the first time he drank.

Narconon centers have also found that many who seek treatment later for alcoholism or a drug addiction started their addiction by excessive drinking at a young age. Many of them were college freshmen.

The only way to stay free from addiction is not to drink excessively or try drugs in the first place. If you have questions about drugs or alcohol contact Narconon today. Learn about the dangers of this substance and risks before it’s too late.



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.