Binge Drinking: What It Is, Its Health Effects & How to Stop

This is one of the reasons binge drinking is so common on college campuses. People who binge drink to escape life’s challenges are especially susceptible to developing alcohol addiction. Scientific research has linked heavy drinking to a wide range of effects on your health.

Millions of readers rely on HelpGuide.org for free, evidence-based resources to understand and navigate mental health challenges. Please donate today to help us save, support, and change lives. In social situations where drinking is encouraged, you can give your loved one reasons to practice self-control. For example, if you and your husband are going to a party together, agree beforehand that he will be the designated driver. If no one’s pressuring you, but you still feel a desire to fit in, have a non-alcoholic beverage.

These tips will help you cut back on drinking alcohol.

Long-term impacts of excessive alcohol use include liver damage, heart problems, neurological and gastrointestinal issues, a weakened immune system and mental health issues. Binge drinking is commonly defined as consuming a large quantity of alcohol in a short span, usually within two hours, with the intent of becoming intoxicated. The NHS defines binge drinking as ‘drinking heavily over a short space of time’. But those who engage in binge drinking have a higher risk of alcohol dependency. A large-scale study of emergency room patients revealed that young binge drinkers were more likely to be injured than even long-term, heavy-drinking alcoholics. High-resolution images of the brain have revealed that binge drinking causes some visible, physical changes to the brain.

Establish specific, achievable goals related to alcohol consumption, such as reducing the number of binge drinking episodes per month. In the United States, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reports that about 25% of adults engage in binge drinking, with an average of four episodes per month. If your drinking is negatively affecting you and those around you, then it’s important that you consider reaching out for specialist treatment for addiction.

Binge Drinking: Effects, Risks, and Dangers of Binge Drinking

Instead of criticizing yourself for having a hard time or slipping up and having a drink, remember that no one’s perfect. What matters most is your ability to maintain an open, curious outlook as you learn what does and doesn’t work for you. Turner notes the importance of bringing along a trusted support person when attending events that involve alcohol. It’s often easier to turn down a drink when you don’t have to do it alone.

From monthlong sobriety challenges to the Sober Curious movement, more and more people are taking a closer look at the role alcohol plays in their lives. Everyone can contribute how to stop binge drinking to the prevention of excessive alcohol use. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force also recommends screening and counseling for alcohol misuse in primary care settings.

Binge drinking has serious risks.

So while naltrexone may be employed during treatment, it’s important to consult with a healthcare provider and/or addiction specialist to determine the best form of treatment for your unique needs. Many people with alcohol use disorder hesitate to get treatment because they don’t recognize that they have a problem. An intervention from loved ones can help some people recognize and accept that they need professional help.

  • Binge drinking involves a pattern of short but heavy bursts of alcohol use.
  • This is one of the reasons binge drinking is so common on college campuses.
  • Peer pressure is one of the most common reasons why people overdrink, especially when they’re young or inexperienced drinkers.

If you drink less than the above-recommended amounts, your level of drinking is considered in the “low-risk” category. Still, you may be thinking, “No one drinks that small https://ecosoberhouse.com/ amount of alcohol. Anyone who drinks alcohol drinks more than that.” At the end of the day, one of the most important tools you have at your disposal is self-compassion.

“This was the most defeated and embarrassed I had ever felt, but it was also the most hopeful I was that I could get sober for real this time.” To ease stress, Goldberg recommends using mindfulness-based apps. A 2020 study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that these apps may also help reduce blood pressure, a key stroke risk factor.

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