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Is excessive alcohol consumption an important problem on college campuses, and if so what should be done about it?
Excessive drinking is one of the most severe problems facing many college students; alcoholic abuse affects their social life, education, and health on college campuses today (Foxcroft et al., 24). Across campus, excessive drinking has become a social phenomenon where many college students do not acknowledge the direct health risks associated with excessive drinking habits. Furthermore, many of the college students who have indulged in excessive drinking do not have enough information on alcohol effects and the impacts of its consumption on the body. Across campuses students who join campuses believe it is their time to have fun and one of the social norms is indulged in excessive drinking. Entering college for many students thus becomes not only a time to get a degree but have time to drink and socialize with friends at different parties. In due course, most students do not realize how and when alcohol is abusive. College students have less information on how to consume alcohol in a socially acceptable manner and acknowledge when alcohol becomes abusive to their being.
Reasons for College Drinking
College students have identified reasons behind the massive consumption of alcohol. Peer influence acknowledged as the primary cause for the heavy drinking associated with many college students (Lamis 930). For many college students partying and going to clubs is expected to be fun. However, many students do not give a consideration of how much detrimental effect heavy consumption of alcohol has on their health. Often students prefer to be identified with different social status class, and they strive to have the best parties organized and outdo the previous organized party, the competition has resulted to many college students getting into more alcoholic consumption with time (Lamis 933). College students often associate studies to be stressful and most then produce in preference to consume alcohol to ensure they can cope with the pressure. For example, students who undertake technical courses often abuses alcohol when they get an opportunity to ensure they take a break from their stressful studies. The projects and expected outcomes are given to most college students make them be under pressure to ensure they can cope with their current studies situation. Alcohol accessibility is identified to be a significant issue for many college students; most of the local joints sell alcohol at affordable prices which often attracts most students to get their drinks with ease. The number of extra-curriculum activities available in many campuses is not as intriguing as the social joints that have been set up in most campus neighborhood, and with visitation to the many joint students gets the opportunity to drink while they are having fun with their friends.
Effects of heavy college drinking
Thousands of college students every year begin consuming alcohol as part of their school-based social life and this result to them drinking to excess, after that developing problematic pattern of alcoholic patterns, heavy consumption of alcohol results to long-term harm. College students are negatively impacted by heavy drinking. The number of deaths recorded due to excessive alcohol consumption yearly across the campus of young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 is high (Hayes, Rebecca and Savannah Cook 1553). One in four college students reports poor academic performance in school as a result of excessive drinking and often associated with absenteeism from class. Approximately 40% of college students who are excessive drinkers report an assault by another student who under the influence of alcohol (Hayes, Rebecca and Savannah Cook 1553). Students who are excessive drinkers often report sexual assaults before they complete their college degree. College students who are excessive alcohol consumers are at a higher risk of developing other problems example, attempting suicide while at their low emotional moments, participation in unsafe sexual practices, getting arrested due to breaking law like driving while drunk (Hayes, Rebecca and Savannah Cook 1553).
Solutions to dealing with heavy drinking among college students
College students have an opportunity to deal with their current alcoholic condition to ensure they have a chance to avoid developing complications in the future (Terlecki 2). School campuses need to introduce alcoholic conferences organized in the schools. The more the students are given exposure on the direct and indirect effects of alcohol they get the opportunity to understand the dangers they are heading into if they do not cub down their alcoholic intake (Terlecki 2). The alcohol conferences that are organized across colleges are less, and there is a need for the school management to increase the number of meetings to give the students the desired information for them to make informed decisions while deciding to consume alcohol.
Social influence identified as one of the primary triggers college students have to deal with and has been blamed for their heavy alcoholic consumption (Terlecki 2). Most of the college students prefer to hang around the social joints that are available in the school. To deal with heavy alcohol consumption in colleges school management needs to remove all the triggers like local clubs which often offer cheap liquor to the students. Elimination of the cheap alcohol around the school joints will ensure the students do not have ready access to alcohol at all times. Additionally, campuses need to limit the number of school parties that are organized in schools dorms, the limitless number of parties that can be held in school dorms allow many students to get into heavy alcoholism which is recognized to be detrimental. Furthermore, most of the sexual assaults and abuses often happen during these organized parties, hence with limitations on the number of dorm parties that can be held eliminate the probabilities in the assaults that occur in the parties.
College students who are already addicted to alcohol need to ensure they enroll for help (Auerbach 623). Colleges need to provide counseling sessions for students who are already heavily addicted to alcohol. Students who get the opportunity to seek medical help from an early stage get the opportunity to rectify their alcoholic issue; often students who are alcoholic who find medication get the opportunity to correct their grades. Heavy alcoholism associated with poor grades, with proper therapy and medication the students have a chance to perform better in school and ensure they get their desired grades by the end of the academic year. Campus management decision to have a department to deal with the rising number of campus students dealing with alcoholism allows the management to put in place precise measures to deal with the underlying issue with ease. Students who are caught under the influence of alcohol misbehaving need to be given heavy punishment to ensure they shy from misbehaving under the influence of alcohol.
College students can decide to cut back on their alcohol by keep track of their intake (Selkie 83). As explained one of the best ways to ensure the students can cut down on their drinking is limiting the number of parties organized in the dorm rooms where there is free alcohol given to those who attend. Also, students can form groups where they decide to be accountable to ensure other on reducing the amount of alcohol they take in a week with the help of an alcoholic counselor. Accountability will provide the college students purposely decide to focus on cutting back on the alcoholic drinks consumed (Selkie 85). To measure their progress, students need to get a medical checkup and fully understand what damages are being caused by heavy consumption of alcohol. By cutting back the heavy use, the students get the opportunity to see the progress of their health getting back in shape this will act as one of the ways to ensure they can celebrate the health benefits they get to enjoy for being free of alcohol for a certain period.
In summary, excessive alcohol consumption is a common problem that is identified among many college students. The three significant triggers for heavy alcohol consumption are peer pressure, easy access to alcohol and stress related to studies. The effects of heavy alcohol consumption entail health complications, low grades, breaking the law and attempting suicide. However, some solutions can be provided to ensure college students are capable of dealing with the heavy alcoholism. Getting the needed help from an alcoholic counselor, campus management needs to limit the number of dorm parties held, alcoholic joints need to be removed around campus, and more alcoholic education conferences need to be held in schools.
Auerbach, Randy P., et al. "WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project: Prevalence and distribution of mental disorders." Journal of abnormal psychology 127.7 (2018): 623.
Foxcroft, David R., et al. "Social norms information for alcohol misuse in university and college students." Cochrane database of systematic reviews 12 (2015).
Hayes, Rebecca M., Rebecca L. Abbott, and Savannah Cook. "It’s her fault: Student acceptance of rape myths on two college campuses." Violence against women 22.13 (2016): 1540-1555.
Lamis, Dorian A., et al. "Depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation in college students: the mediating and moderating roles of hopelessness, alcohol problems, and social support." Journal of clinical psychology 72.9 (2016): 919-932.
Selkie, Ellen M., et al. "Cyberbullying, depression, and problem alcohol use in female college students: a multisite study." Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking18.2 (2015): 79-86.
Terlecki, Meredith A., et al. "Randomized controlled trial of brief alcohol screening and intervention for college students for heavy-drinking mandated and volunteer undergraduates: 12-month outcomes." Psychology of addictive behaviors 29.1 (2015): 2.
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