Disclaimer: The information, articles, and tips portrayed on this blog, while based on research, do not constitute medical advice. The opinions expressed are meant to educate and inform, but not to dictate lifestyle choices or personal beliefs. These articles are meant to provoke thought on issues surrounding college health and to inform the Hopkins community of healthy information and resources.

9.16.2010

Weekend Sip Tip

9.16.2010
The phrase "College Binge Drinking" seems to be the topic of much discussion and debate among media outlets and higher education professionals, but honestly, what does it mean? According to the NIAAA, binge drinking is defined as, "a pattern of drinking that brings a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to 0.08 grams percent or above. This typically happens when men consume 5 or more drinks, and when women consume 4 or more drinks, in about 2 hours." It's a nice compact definition, but if you are out at a party with a solo cup in your hand, are you really aware of your BAC or the number of drinks you've consumed? We can address ways to monitor your BAC, define serving sizes of beverages, and even offer some Solo cup simulations, but what might be more important is to discuss some of the dangers associated with binge drinking behaviors.

According to the CDC, "About 90% of the alcohol consumed by youth under the age of 21 in the United States is in the form of binge drinks." And what can binge drinking lead to? Unintentional injuries, unwanted sexual encounters, pregnancy, STIs, neurological damage, fights, sexual dysfunction, broken relationships, and even alcohol poisoning or death. If you choose to drink, ask yourself, do you binge drink? Aside from the formal definition, do you choose to go out to party with the intention of getting drunk? Do you often wake-up in the morning with hangovers, a patchy memory, or a list of regrets? Perhaps you may want to cut down on the number of drinks you consume. Limiting yourself to less than two drinks an hour will allow you to feel the euphoric, social effects of alcohol without the consequences that binge drinking tends to carry. It's perfectly fine to go out and socialize, just don't jeopardize your health and safety. Avoid the binge, Stop@Buzzed!

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