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Binge Drinking in the Young Can Lead to Disaster

Posted in Young Adults

Binge drinking is often an activity selected for fun, yet those who partake are not always aware of the risks involved. And, as college students are back on campus and getting involved in the social aspect of the experience, underage and excessive drinking are coming together with devastating results. 

According to a KVUE news piece, recent studies point to an increase in binge drinking. This is a risk on college campuses as excessive drinking is often associated with unintentional sex, poor academic performance, violence and data rape.

Binge drinking includes consuming five or more drinks in a row for men, and four or more for women. It is also a pattern of drinking alcohol that ensures the blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 is reached or exceeded typically within two hours.

While it appears that underage drinkers have fewer opportunities to engage in alcohol as compared with their older peers, more of these individuals have alcohol related problems. Unfortunately, more than 1,700 college students age 18-24 die each year as a result of unintentional alcohol-related injuries. Another 5,000+ underage youth die from the misuse of alcohol.

Alcohol is considered a legal psychoactive drug that will change the chemistry of the brain and could also have long term effects on the still maturing teenage brain. In fact, MRI tests conducted on youth ages 14-21 who are frequent consumers of alcohol indicate there are definitive changes in both of these areas.

When a teen goes off to college for the first time, engaging in excessive drinking is not a rite of passage; instead it is a dangerous activity that can result in brain damage or even death.