Living A Sober College Life: What Does This Mean?
College and The Sober Life
Sobriety and college life may seem like a strange concept. After all, college is the time to explore, make new friends, and experiment. It is a time of growth and development, without the oversight of your parents. Students are eager to fit in. However, drugs on college campuses is a growing concern. For new students, the stresses of adjusting to college life can lead them to turn to drugs and alcohol to fit in. Fraternities and sororities are infamous for hazing. These rituals can sometimes include drinking and other drugs. Aside from those organizations, many other aspects of college culture increase the risk of addiction and what starts as harmless experimentation can lead to a lifetime of addiction. Resurgence Behavioral Health can help you if you are struggling with an addiction, even while you are in college.
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The Realties of Campus Life
Weekend parties with alcohol are real situations that students have to deal with. It can be difficult to abstain when all your friends are enjoying alcohol. It’s even more difficult for those who have grown dependent on alcohol. College should be a time of positive self-discovery. The temptation to take drugs on college campuses can be overwhelming with the pressure of fitting in. Drugs will always be associated with college life. Learning to navigate these situations and knowing when to get help is important
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Drugs on College Campuses
College students make up the largest portion of drug users. Open minds toward drug experimentation, test anxiety, less oversight from parents, newfound freedom, and partying are all incentives that fuel substance use. It does not matter what college you attend; the presence of drugs is embedded in the college culture. It is important to understand all the risks associated with recreational college drugs. There are many reasons why you should avoid risky behaviors while in college.
Why Avoid Drugs and Alcohol in College
Many college students falsely believe that parties and binge drinking are a rite of passage. However, the variety of health and safety risks from alcohol use and misuse can cause unintended consequences.
According to the United States National Institute on Drug Abuse or NIDA, alcohol is the leading factor in sexual assault cases on college campuses. Nearly half of all sexual assault cases in college involve alcohol consumption; both by the perpetrator and the victim. Alcohol reduces people’s inhibitions which can lead to making terrible choices while under the influence. Many college students will never identify themselves as drug addicts or alcoholics due to the stigma of addiction. It isn’t until the consequences cannot be ignored that they begin to seek help, some never reach out.
Signs and Symptoms of Addiction While in College
Many students show early warning signs that alcohol and drug use is becoming problematic. When a student shows extreme changes in personality, mood, appearance, and responsibilities, an addiction may be to blame. These are a few signs to watch for to determine where you fall on the spectrum of substance abuse:
- Skipping class
- Changing social circles
- Dramatic weight changes
- Mood swings
Substance abuse has a negative impact both physically and psychologically. When you are struggling with substances it makes it hard to complete your college requirements.
Immediate Placement in Rehab for College Students
The Struggle of Sobriety College Life
Being sober in college can seem like social suicide if you’re just trying to fit in. One of the best ways to ensure your drinking doesn’t get out of control is to seek out other students who are also interested in abstaining. Sober college living groups and events are becoming more common on college campuses around the United States in response to the needs of those with substance use disorders. Many campuses already have programs and rules that curb drug and alcohol use.
How to Maintain Sobriety in College
For many young adults, alcohol is part of the “college experience.” However, this perspective creates obstacles for students This attitude creates a challenge for those students in recovery. Fortunately, there are many options that you can do to avoid relapsing and gain positive sobriety college life experiences.
- Avoid High-Risk Situations- When you know drinking and risk-taking are going to happen at a party, the best way to stay sober in college is to avoid these situations.
- Be an Early Riser- Most college partying begins after the sunsets. Take morning classes and enjoy the afternoon. Not partying all night, you can wake up refreshed and prepared to start the day. While the rest of the partiers are recovering from binge drinking, you can be enjoying the morning.
- Join a Club- Colleges are full of many different clubs and associations. Get involved in these activities not only help your social life but help you to maintain your sobriety in college.
- Volunteer- If you have the extra time between studying and attending classes you can volunteer your time for a good cause. Often the time you spend volunteering can be used towards your college credits. Plus, it looks great on future resumes.
- Speak Out- Don’t be afraid to tell people that you are sober. Once you tell one person, it will become much easier to tell the second, the third, and so on. When you do not make a big deal that you are sober, chances are most young adults simply do not care. Most likely they will not even notice you are not drinking.
- Off-campus living- Living in a dorm with roommates who abuse drugs and alcohol can make staying sober difficult. Instead of risking your sobriety, choosing to live off-campus may be the best option.
- Plan Ahead- College is stressful. You will have to learn effective ways to handle this newfound stress. Relaxation techniques are essential tools that you can use to combat college life stress.
- Start Your Own Recovery Group- If your college campus does not have an on-campus recovery group you can start one yourself. A worthwhile task that can help you maintain your recovery and the opportunity to meet others that find college life sobriety a challenge!
Own Your Sobriety
You do not need to drink alcohol to enjoy college life. A sober college life can be just as fun. The most responsible decision you can make in college is to get and stay sober. Owning your sobriety in college is challenging and at times discouraging. You will face many temptations and the risk of relapse. Maintaining your sobriety will take courage, strength, and determination. You will find yourself recommitting daily to your recovery goals. Own your sobriety no matter what life throws your way. Being sober in college is difficult at any stage in recovery. Resurgence Behavioral Health can help you by providing the right treatment and necessary skills to help successfully maintain sobriety in college life.
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Seeking Treatment at Resurgence
Excessive drinking while in college can lead to lifelong addiction. If you are struggling to control your use of alcohol or drugs, Resurgence Behavioral Health can help you break free and live a sober college life. Even if you are in college you can still seek the treatment you need. Having access to a supportive sober atmosphere is essential to recover and successfully maintaining sobriety. Resurgence Behavioral Health provides many types of outpatient treatments and sober living arrangements that allow you to continue going to classes. We accept most major insurance carriers and provide an online verification tool. Reach out to us today and have a better tomorrow.