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One of the riskiest environments for the development of drug and alcohol abuse and dependency issues is the college campus. Long a part of college culture, recreational drug use and frequent binge drinking continue to plague college campuses throughout the nation, and although studies indicate that alarming percentages of college students meet the criteria for alcohol abuse and dependence, only a small faction of these substance abusers are getting appropriate college drug treatment for their substance abuse problems.

Why Is College Drug and Alcohol Ase and Abuse So Prevalent?

The high numbers of college students needing drug treatment stems at least partially from the university social culture that encourages binge drinking and drug abuse, and students attending so called "party schools", schools with a reputation for excessive alcohol and drug use, are far more likely to develop dependency issues.

Peer pressure towards alcohol use and abuse, as a part of socialization rituals (frosh week etc.) as well as a population that makes frequent use of the bar, club and house party for entertainment, causes increased exposure to drugs and alcohol, and increases eventual problems.

Additionally, for many students, college represents the first period living away from home and operating without parental supervision and guidance. Without restraints to behavior, some adolescent college students respond with unhealthy lifestyle choices. Some alcohol and drug abuse may be promoted from life stresses that occur as a result of the transition out of the family environment; and as a coping mechanism to the pressures of study, and the loneliness and stress of college, some students take to escapism through intoxication.

Studies indicate that although drug treatments for college students do exist, and that nearly all universities operate substance abuse support programming, the vast majority of people who meet the criteria for abuse or dependence report that they either do not feel a need to get help, or do not know how to go about attaining college drug treatment assistance.

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Page last updated Nov 08, 2010

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