A National Directory of Drug Treatment Centers and Alcohol Treatment Centers, Therapists and Specialists. A free, simple directory providing assistance and guidance for those seeking help regarding alcohol addiction, drug addiction, dependency and many other conditions that affect the mind, body and soul.
Call 800-580-9104 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

Binge culture

During the holiday season many high school seniors sort out their college preferences and work on their college applications. If in the midst of that anxiety-producing process, students and parents ask college officials to comment on the culture of drinking and alcohol abuse on campus, they are likely to be assured that the school upholds state laws that prohibit students under the age of 21 from purchasing alcoholic beverages.

Anyone remotely familiar with college life knows that this response amounts to a gigantic wink. Alcohol flows freely at college parties for students of all ages, and the patterns of use are hazardous to the entire campus. It’s been estimated that nearly half of all college students and 80 percent of students who live in fraternity houses engage in binge drinking (consuming four or more drinks in a row). Students under 21 are actually more likely to be binge drinkers than are older students. The epidemic of binge drinking has serious consequences: students who engage in it are far more likely to miss classes, injure themselves and others, and engage in risky sexual behavior. Nondrinkers may suffer date rape and other violence, and interrupted study or sleep—not to mention property damage.

Earlier this year, over 120 college presidents declared that they were fed up with the way alcohol abuse shapes the college atmosphere, and they blamed current law for pushing alcohol consumption underground. Under the banner of the Amethyst Initiative, the presidents proposed lowering the drinking age to 18. This, they suggested, would take colleges out of the untenable position of pretending that students under 21 are not drinking, and it would turn drinking into a public activity. College officials could then have a better chance of monitoring the drinking and of making moderate drinking the norm.

That proposal faces some strong counterarguments. Many observers, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving, believe that the significant decline in drunk-driving deaths among youthful drivers is directly attributable to the 1984 federal law that withholds a portion of federal highway money from any state that lowers its drinking age to under 21. Furthermore, lowering the drinking age to 18 would inevitably make alcohol more accessible to high school students. Those arguments are probably strong enough to preclude a change in the legal drinking age.

Nevertheless, the Amethyst Initiative has put its finger on the hypocrisies and failures of the current arrangements. At the very least its arguments should lead schools to a renewed discussion of how to change the drinking culture. “There is something about certain college environments that promote binge drinking,” says Toben Nelson of Harvard’s School of Public Health. Nelson reported this past summer on a study that found that rigorous anti-drinking laws and enforcement of those laws, along with help from local merchants in limiting marketing of alcohol, can diminish the culture of drinking on campus.

Above all, schools need to stop thinking that there is something inevitable about the culture of binge drinking. Many young lives are wasted and wounded in the college environment—and that is nothing to wink at.

source:  Christian Century

More Treatment & Detox Articles

It's all about drugs, say local authorities

Drugs are the common thread running through the most extreme crimes in the Poconos. According to court records, drugs permeated the life of Steven Santillo for years. Last week a motorist found Santillo shot dead at the intersection of Hypsie Gap and Laurel roads in Chestnuthill Township. State police have accused Fritz Gerald Dejoie, 21,….

Continue reading

Signs of Depression to Look Out For

Depression can actually impair an individual’s overall ability to function in their day to day lives, and can result in that individual feeling as if taking their life is the only way to escape the emotions of despair that are experienced. Depression is an issue that affects millions of individuals around the world. This is….

Continue reading

Canadians spend millions drinking just to sleep

Canadians are spending hundreds of millions of dollars every year self-medicating their insomnia with alcohol, a new study suggests. “We were very surprised to see that so many people use alcohol as a way to promote sleep, particularly because it has more detrimental than beneficial effects on sleep,” says Charles Morin, a professor of psychology….

Continue reading

Female alcoholism remains hidden but widespread problem

A USA Today report said one-third of the estimated 17.6 million Americans with alcohol dependency are women. Photo illustration by David Wells New York mother Diane Schuler gained national attention this summer when she crashed her car into an SUV because she had high levels of alcohol and marijuana in her system. The accident killed….

Continue reading