The Statistics of College Drug Abuse
Drug Abuse Among College Students
While it is possible for a person to become addicted to drugs at any age, research into drug abuse among college students statistics shows that college is a risky time for drug use. In fact, substance abuse in college statistics shows that college students make up the largest group of drug abusers in the nation.
Young adults that are enrolled in college are twice as likely to abuse drugs than those that do not attend college. Why is drug abuse in college statistics so high? And how can Resurgence Behavioral Health help your college student get back on the path to a long and healthy life?
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Understanding Drug Abuse Among College Students Statistics
Drug abuse among college students statistics shows that there are many different reasons why a student begins using drugs. This period brings many changes to a young person’s life, and with it many different obstacles to overcome. The reasons a college student may try drugs can include:
- Stress – As students are facing the high demands of schoolwork, part-time jobs, internships, social obligations, and more, many turn to drugs to cope.
- Course Load – More students than ever are taking stimulants, such as amphetamines, to help them stay awake to study or complete assignments on time.
- Curiosity – College students are exploring many new aspects of their lives now that they are away from their families. It is not uncommon for that self-exploration to include drug experimentation.
- Peer pressure – College students are often surrounded by other people experimenting with drugs. This makes them more likely to try these substances for themselves.
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The Effects of Drug Abuse
Drug use among college students statistics does not just tell us how common drug use can be at colleges, but also what risks it carries. Drug use by people under 25 comes with especially dangerous risks. This is because a person’s brain continues to develop until they are in their mid-20s. The part of the brain that controls decision making is one of the last areas to develop. Taking drugs during this time of brain growth can cause a delay or even stop brain development.
This can lead to poor decision-making abilities, and lead to a young person doing risky things such as impaired driving or unsafe sex. Drug use among college students statistics shows that the earlier a person starts using drugs, the greater the chance of developing a dependency or addiction.
It also increases the chances of having serious health issues later in life, including heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, lung issues, high blood pressure, depression, and insomnia.
What Drugs do College Students Use?
Today, drug abuse among college students statistics show that college students are using several different types of drugs. There are two types of drugs in particular that are growing in popularity with college students: prescription medications and marijuana. Prescription medications fall into three main categories:
- Stimulants – These drugs have effects that are similar to cocaine. Repeated use can cause many health issues, including paranoia, high body temperatures, and an irregular heartbeat. These side effects are even more serious when stimulants are taken in large doses, or when they are snorted or injected.
- Opioids – The misuse of opioids are becoming a health issue for many people in the United States, college students are included. These drugs act on the same parts of the brain as heroin. They can cause sleepiness, nausea, constipation, and depression. In large doses, opioids can cause slowed breathing, coma, and even death.
- Depressants – These drugs create a feeling of relaxation and can help people sleep. Misuse of depressants can cause slurred speech, shallow breathing, fatigue, disorientation, lack of coordination, and seizures. These effects are serious for people who frequently use them, as they will quickly go into withdrawals when they stop using.
When talking about marijuana, substance abuse in college statistics show that college students are far more likely to use this drug. College students were found to be 51% more likely to use marijuana than young people who were not enrolled in college. And regular marijuana use has been linked to poor school performance, increased chances of dropping out, and a higher chance of trying other drugs.
Mental Illness and Drug Abuse Among College Students
When it comes to drugs and mental illness, drug abuse among college students statistics show they often go hand in hand. Students who are experiencing mental health issues such as anxiety and depression are more likely to experiment with drugs.
Prolonged drug use can cause or worsen mental health issues. These issues can include eating disorders, a loss of interest in family and friends, over-sensitivity, moodiness, nervousness, paranoia, and hallucinations. Regular marijuana use in particular was shown to cause a major increase in the risk of experiencing depression.
How to Tell if a College Student is Using Drugs
Sometimes it can be hard to tell if your college student is simply homesick or worn out, or if they might be using drugs. But when it comes to drug abuse in college statistics, there are some big signs that you can look for. These include:
- Losing interest in hobbies or activities.
- Not taking care of their physical appearance.
- Being frequently tired, sad, or angry.
- Eating more or eating less than usual.
- Being very energetic, talking fast, or saying things that do not make sense.
- Missing important appointments or events.
- Having problems at school, such as missing class or getting bad grades.
- Having problems in personal or family relationships.
- Lying or stealing.
- Poor concentration or lack of coordination.
Just one or two of these symptoms may not mean your college student is using drugs. It may just mean they are having a hard time adjusting to college life or taking on too many classes for the semester. If you are noticing more than just two of these signs, there is a chance they might be using drugs.
Treatment Options for Drug Abuse Among College Students
At Resurgence Behavioral Health, we believe in offering each of our clients a personalized rehabilitation program to suit their needs. Whether it is inpatient, outpatient, partial hospitalization, or a residential program, we help you and your family to decide what program option is best to help your college student.
Once they are done with detox, we can begin further treatment with therapy sessions, in both one-on-one and group sessions. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT, is a great option for clients dealing with any type of drug addiction. CBT allows us to work with our clients to figure out the reasons for using drugs, and how their beliefs influence their behaviors. By getting the reasons behind why they have been using drugs, we can help them to get on the path to total recovery.
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Get the Help You Need from a Dedicated Team
The first step in helping your college student overcome their addiction is simple: contact us. At Resurgence, we pride ourselves on building an affordable, personalized recovery plan for each client – without sacrificing quality. Our free insurance verification allows us to help you figure out exactly what your insurance will pay for.
We accept most PPO insurance as well as private forms of payment for treatment. We will also communicate with your insurance provider to ensure that your student receives every benefit that they are entitled to. You can complete a simple form right from our website or call us directly.
At Resurgence, we believe that environment is just as important as treatment. That is why our locations are set in safe and peaceful neighborhoods, with plenty of open space for quiet reflection. Our warm, sunny weather and proximity to beaches and parks mean that, when you are ready and able, you can enjoy being outside.
And our specially prepared nutritious meals help to support your total physical recovery. College can be a very tumultuous time for students and parents alike. You do not have to try and solve your student’s drug problems on your own.
Let us help your student gain all the tools and resources that they need to be successful in overcoming their addiction. Call us today to get them started on their path to a drug-free life.