The Binge Debacle: A Collegiate Concern
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The Binge Debacle: A Collegiate Concern

It's really not worth a good Friday night.

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The Binge Debacle: A Collegiate Concern
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It should come as no surprise that college age adults partake in drinking. However, casual drinking is hardly the issue here. Unfortunately, the millennial generation has a bad habit, and it's called binge drinking. If you don't believe me, the devil is in the details: about four in five college students drink and about half of college students who drink, also consume alcohol through binge drinking.

Dorm life causes you to be close to your peers, so naturally peer pressure is to be expected. It's not uncommon for students to even plan ahead when they are going binge drink. Friend groups take turn babysitting incoherent friends who won't remember the night the next morning. With the exception of maybe med/nursing majors, these college students have no clue how drunk their friends are or when is too much. Tolerance is an unfamiliar area for most teens and 20-somethings. There's a lot of gray matter in the topic of what is considered binge drinking and what is considered a standard drink.

Let's take a college favorite for example, beer. A 12-ounce bottle of beer with 5-percent alcohol is an example of a standard drink. A pattern of binge drinking would be about four beers for women and five beers for men within a two hour period. Now, I don't know about you, but I've definitely seen that done by many college guys. An additional issue is that although the standard drink is a good starter guideline for healthy drinking, it's all too common for drinks to be over-poured when a 20-year-old is playing bartender.

Let's be honest, though; name one mainstream college-based movie that doesn't show a scene with a house party or a kegger at a frat house. We've come to believe that if you didn't black out in someone's front yard, you didn't have a good time. I can't even count the amount of times I've been called lame for not going out drinking on Friday or wanting to turn in before bar close. This has become the social norm for college kids. The sad part is my peers have no clue how dangerous this behavior can really be.

Injury, violence, sexual assault, academic decline, and even death are all consequences of irresponsible drinking habits. The statistics are shocking: 1,825 college students die each year of alcohol-related injuries, more that 97,000 colleges students are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape, and about 25 percent of college students report academic consequences of their drinking. Does the problem seem more real now?

So, the next question is how do we solve this problem? And, with any subject, the best start is through education. I know YOLO is a fun mantra, but drinking yourself to alcohol poisoning isn't the best way to live it out. It is pertinent that the millennial generation become aware of the danger that they are putting themselves in when they party too hard. I'm not condemning drinking altogether; if you are of age, with a designated driver, and a responsible mindset, you are more than welcome to enjoy your night with some cocktails. The issue is with irresponsibility.

College students are putting themselves, and their peers, in danger when drinking to the point of incoherence. And are we really surprised by that? Drinking is always considered a depressant on the nervous system and is commonly accompanied by behaviors not rationally thought through. In order for my college peers and I to stay safe and successful, we need to start a real conversation about binge drinking. With a strong dialogue between students, parents, and professors about the dangers of binge drinking, we may just be able to save some lives, and some livers, for the next generation of collegiate adults.

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