College Freshmen and Substance Abuse


College Freshmen and Substance Abuse – There are some good studies that have shown that an effective way to prevent problems with alcohol and drugs is for parents to talk to their teenagers the summer before going to college about the dangers of these substances. Three reasons why college is more dangerous for students is there is no parental control, about half the population at college are of legal drinking age and they will likely want to experiment more. It is important for parents to discuss what dangers their children will be exposed to, as teenagers can develop chronic alcohol problems and drink at higher levels which can lead to alcohol poisoning. College campuses are trying to come up with ways to combat this problem. For instance, San Diego State has initiated a program called “Aztec Nights” during the first six weeks (which is the highest risk time) to give college students something to do besides drinking at night. They put together student groups and planned concerts and other activities and they serve free food and non-alcoholic drinks. This has been a great success, as alcohol poisoning and alcohol-related arrests went down dramatically. There are also many great programs available to parents who want to help their kids get through the critical transition from high school to college. Dr. Clapp is Director of the Center for Alcohol and Drug Studies, Professor at the School of Social Work, Adjunct Professor for the Graduate School of Public Health, at SDSU as well as the Director for the US


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