Given all of the information available on the dangers of binge drinking, why do people still do it? As a counselor for both in-class and online alcohol classes, binge drinking is always a topic of conversation.
The Atlantic reports research by the renowned Center for Disease Control (CDC) shows binge drinking leads to violence, spread of sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancy, and risky behavior. Do you suffer from any of those?
Most likely, even if you binge drink you don’t. These are just things that happen more frequently when a person get very intoxicated as a result of binge drinking. I binge drank thousands of times. I was involved in a dozen or so violent situations and engaged in risky behavior daily.
According to the CDC, the definition of a binge drinker is someone who drinks more than five drinks in "a short period of time."
Here is a common situation where binge drinking occurs. It begins at dinner with a group of friends in a popular restaurant. What followed was a series of wines paired to dishes. Over the course of a long two-3-hour meal you definitely catch a buzz. Figure total alcohol consumed is 5-7 drinks. Have a quick after dinner drink and head home.
The CDC claims that binge drinking is a bigger problem than previously thought, suggesting that it can (and often does) result in risky behavior, leading to violence, suicide, spread of sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancy, car crashes, and alcohol dependence. According to the CDC binge drinkers rack up over 223 billion dollars annually.
Binge drinking can creep up on you. For me it started watching sports on TV, drinking one beer after another. It was only when I had to crush all the cans to get them into my recycling bin that I noticed I had a real problem.
If you or someone you care about is a binge drinker, I urge you to seek help. If you prefer to maintain total anonymity there are online alcohol classes too.