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Health Risk of Binge Drinking in College

Throughout the literature there is evidence that alcohol abuse, specifically binge drinking, is at epidemic proportions among AmericaÆs college and university student populations. A federally appointed Task Force on College Drinking whose report was comprised of data from numerous surveys and databases was recently released. The report found that alcohol consumption among college students in the U.S. is responsible for 1,400 alcohol-related deaths, 500,000 injuries and 70,000 cases of sexual assault or date rape annually (College, 2002, 07D). A majority of alcohol-related deaths are due from motor vehicle accidents caused by drunk drivers.

The Harvard School of Public HealthÆs College Alcohol Study (CAS) has become a standard of alcohol consumption research. The Harvard CAS defined binge drinking as consumption of five or more drinks at one time. The CAS has been conducted four times (1993, 1997, 1999 and 2001) and demonstrates that the percentage of binge drinkers has remained steady at 40% to 45% over the past decade (Keeling, 2002, 197). In other words, approximately half of AmericaÆs college students admit to binge drinking. While the frequency of binge drinking and the number of drinks consumed by binge drinkers varies, one factor does not. Binge drinking causes the most harm associated with alcohol use on campuses, in studentÆs lives and in college communities. Bing drinking and alcohol abuse are associated with a variety of problems from academic trouble to date rape. Prendergast (1994) reports that a survey of college and university administrators shows that alcohol is ôa factor in 295 of academic problems and in 21% of cases of dropping out of schoolö (104).

It is binge drinking that causes the most alcohol-related harm. According to Wechsler and Molnar (1999), those who binge drink consume 68% of all alcohol students report consuming (247). The reasons for use of alcohol by college students include a v...

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Health Risk of Binge Drinking in College. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 08:22, February 18, 2019, from