Welcome back to school Cougars! For those new students, you are about to be in for a big journey. As many of you will soon see, I’m sure, college isn’t just about studying and school work. It is also about having fun, making friends, cutting loose, and creating memories that will last a lifetime. It is important therefore to ensure that your college experience does not end in disaster.
Alcohol is a very common thing to see at college parties and in college life in general,. Used in moderation and in smart ways, can really be fun and safe. However, used irresponsibly, it is also responsible for around 1,825 deaths of college students from ages 18-24 per year. As well as around 600,000 reported cases of Assault and Injury. Close to 100,000 students ages 18-24 report being victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or rape. All these as well as increased chances of academic problems and health problems/suicide attempts are simply due to alcohol abuse.
Some easy ways to ensure that your college experience is the best it can possibly be is to think ahead. Choosing a designated driver is easy, smart, and could save your life as well as the lives of other innocent people. Not only that, but many bars in the San Marcos area even give freebees, or special deal incentives for designated drivers through the RADD program. Check out what bars and restaurants offers incentives with RADD. Another good idea is to never go to a party alone. Many of the reported instances of assault, sexual abuse and injury take place in public parties. Having someone you know there with you will ensure that you have someone to keep an eye on you, and vise-verse.
Finally it is important to know the symptoms of alcohol poisoning. The most common symptoms of alcohol poisoning are, confusion, stupor, coma, or inability to wake up, vomiting, seizures, slow breathing (less that 8 breaths per minute), irregular breaths, hypothermia, bluish skin color, or paleness. These warning signs are symptoms that something is very wrong. The lack of action could result in death.
If someone is exhibiting these symptoms, be sure to lay them on their side which reduces the chances of them choking on their own vomit, and call 911. In California, we have a 911 Good Samaritan Law which guarantees legal immunity if someone calls 911 for an overdosing companion. So remember to have fun in college. But also remember to be smart, safe, and think ahead. The life it saves could be yours.