Students: Drugs and Alcohol

While drinking in moderation may be fun and seem a harmless part of student life; getting drunk regularly may come with potentially dangerous side effects.
Current studies show that high school and college-age students are more likely to drink, smoke and take drugs than the general older population.

Why are students more inclined to take substances that potentially can harm their bodies than any other group of people?  When it comes to teen drinking, parents would be wise not to look the other way. The consequences — from drunken driving accidents to date rape and violent crime — make it clear that teen drinking is much more than just harmless youthful experimentation. Peer pressure may contribute to use by high school students; however, cheap student bars and freedom of living away from home all can contribute to the choices made by college students.  Many may be on their own, away from the influence of the parents and other family members for the first time.  It is important that students of any age are provided with an educational, emotional and behavioral foundation that will help them make an informed decision about the way they live their lives and care for their health.

For many students, high school or college life can seem to revolve around alcohol.  While drinking in moderation may be fun and seem a harmless part of student life; getting drunk regularly may come with potentially dangerous side effects.   Included with potentially serious physical, social and academic effects, even drinking occasionally can impair academic performance.  Alcohol affects concentration, makes it easier to miss classes and goes hand-in-hand with late school performance and doing badly in exams.

Drinking inappropriately can put a female student at immediate risk of serious harm, ranging from date rape, side effects associated with unprotected sex and an unplanned pregnancy.  However, it is the long-term effects that can bring the greatest harm to either the male or female student, including liver disease, increased risk of heart attack, weight gain and increased potential for cancer.  Recognizing one’s limits as a student drinker and planning on a safe way home from a night of fun are important considerations.  Over the longer term, however, with a consistent pattern of drinking on a regular basis, outside help may be necessary to stop a dangerous pattern.

A recent study showed that over half of 16 to 24 year olds have tried drugs at least one, with the most common being marijuana.  Oftentimes, students see experimenting with drugs as a rite of passage.  However, drugs are illegal for a reason.  Along with side effects that put the student’s mental and physical health at risk, use of drugs can also contribute to the same social and physical risks associated with excessive use of alcohol.  With a growing rate of drug use and addiction appearing in students, the numbers of students who regularly use marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin or cocaine is on the rise.  Heroin abuse among teens and young adult students is on the rise, with the events of drug overdose rising in direct proportion.

If you fear your student may be abusing the use of alcohol or drugs of any kind, seek professional help for proper direction and assistance.

Distributed by Client Initiatives

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