Throughout the years, more than a quarter of the population in the US has been reported to engage in binge drinking, as well as heavy alcohol use. Although alcohol is considered to be a legal substance, too much intake is becoming an addiction for a lot of people today, especially in young adults.
Here are the reasons why binge drinking can lead to addiction:
1. Peer Pressure
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a drinking problem, such as binge drinking, is commonly observed in young adults ages 18-34. This particular group is most likely college students. Students in their college years are very vulnerable and can easily be transformed in terms of their routines and activities.
One reason why binge drinking becomes an addiction is due to peer pressure. Since college is the chapter of a young adult where he becomes independent from his parents, there’s a need to conform with the society where he belongs.
The usual course of action is to look for a group of people where he can fit in. Moreover, students are more prone to explore vices, such as smoking and drinking alcohol, which can lead to binge drinking.
It’s always nice to grab a bottle of beer or two after a long stressful day at the university. For some people, their way of distressing is a few drinks with their friends. However, if a student is getting too much stress in the school work, he might be taking too much alcohol than usual.
Scientifically, the effect of alcohol in the body is to calm the nerves, therefore, reducing the feeling of stress. If a person is constantly feeling stressed, he might resort in drinking alcohol as a remedy to the symptoms of anxiety. This will usually result to binge drinking and alcoholism.
That’s why it’s still best to talk with loved ones when feeling stressed out, or even consulting a psychologist if stress is too much.
3. A Coping Mechanism to Problems
Most college students experience anxiety and depression at some point in time. In addition, the rate of young adults diagnosed with mental health illness has alarmingly increased. Because of this, some would tend to seek comfort in drinking alcohol.
Not only that, most students have this perception that drinking alcohol will help them forget their problems. This may be true, however, it’s a temporary fix to a problem. Usually, if they encounter issues involving relationships, academic standing, as well as their families, they tend to drink it all out since they’re not yet mentally and emotionally mature enough to cope up with their problems in the best way possible.
This is why binge drinking becomes an addiction. Since they’ll frequently face problems from time to time, they might form a habit to seek comfort in alcohol during these times. This will result in alcoholism and can have a higher risk of diseases and complications if it’ll not be treated or addressed.
4. Societal Perception and Advertisements
Another reason why people, especially college students, binge drink is because of how society, and our culture, exhibit the concept of drinking. During ancient times, drinking is a way of socialization as well as displaying their social status. Wine is only associated with the noble, for example. Thus, the concept of drinking plays a role in one’s status symbol.
Today, drinking is associated primarily in the concept of party culture. College students love to throw and attend parties, whether it’s a celebration of their birthdays or campus events where student organizations such as fraternities and sororities are involved.
Also, marketing strategies and advertisements of alcoholic beverages tend to display a perception to consumers that consuming alcohol is cool and fun. Since young adults are exposed to all platforms and channels, like television and the internet, it can create an impression that drinking alcohol will make them look and feel good. This can also result in binge drinking, and in the long term can lead to addiction and alcoholism problems.
Students with weak mentality are most likely to fall into the trap of these perceptions and have the tendency to binge drink.
There are a lot of factors on how binge drinking can lead to addiction. College students are most likely to binge drink due to peer pressure, stress, and inability to cope up with problems as well as adverse effects of society and culture.