Menu Close

Build a foundation for lasting recovery

Is Substance Abuse Rampant in College?

Statistics show that those enrolled in a full-time college program are two times more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol than those who don’t go to college. College students or young adults (ages 18 to 24) are one of the nation’s biggest groups of substance abusers. A recent study found that 37% of college students regularly abuse illegal drugs and alcohol. And they are at an increased risk of addiction. The National Institute of Health The Journal of Lifelong Learning in Psychiatry “Substance Use Among College Students” states:

Although attending college has historically been considered a protective factor against the development of substance use disorders, in recent decades, substance use has become one of the most widespread health problems on college campuses in the United States. In a study by Caldeira et al., nearly half of 946 college students who were followed from freshman to junior year met the criteria for at least one substance use disorder. Students who regularly use substances are more likely to have lower GPAs, spend fewer hours studying, miss significantly more class time, and fail to graduate or be unemployed. Substance use is also associated with significant general medical and psychiatric morbidity and mortality for many students. (NIH)

The college period is supposed to be a time for self-discovery, independence, unbridled potential, lifelong friendships, and learning what the world offers. However, the stress and anxiety placed on college students by their parents, teachers, friends, and society’s expectations sometimes make the entire experience too much to handle. For this reason, many turn to substances. Is Substance Abuse Rampant in College?

Why Do College Students Abuse Drugs?

Along with the anxiety that comes with entering college, several other reasons put college students at an increased risk of abusing drugs. Some of these reasons can include:

  • Social Anxiety
  • Peer Pressure
  • Curiosity
  • Greek Life
  • Coping with Mental Health Issues
  • Academic Success

Another reason college students are more likely to abuse drugs is the easy availability of drugs and alcohol on campus. If it’s there and an individual has had a bad week, it’s easy to use to self-medicate and numb themselves. However, drug abuse should never be excused and if you or a loved one are getting caught up, don’t hesitate to ask for professional help within our Evoke Wellness drug rehab center network.

Common Drugs Taken by College Students

The most commonly abused substance by college students is alcohol. Alcohol is considered almost a ceremonial part of the college lifestyle. Another commonly abused drug amongst college students is stimulants. Stimulants or “study drugs” are used to keep students awake and help them focus on studying for exams. Some other drugs abused by students include marijuana, ecstasy or MDMA, cocaine, and opioids or painkillers. Since marijuana has been legalized in many states now, more students are turning to it as their drug of choice over alcohol. Also, a large percentage of young people between 18 and 25 are suffering from prescription opioid abuse. This has also caused many accidental deaths and injuries in this age range.

Treatment for Alcohol and Drug Addiction

Evoke Wellness has a network of drug and alcohol treatment centers that are carefully designed to offer a lasting solution for healing those suffering from substance use disorders. We offer a safe and comfortable environment for medical detoxification. Our patients are treated extensively so that minimal discomfort is experienced during the detox process. Evoke Wellness provides residential treatment in a structured environment and then provides you with after-care support, which is very important when being treated for addiction. Evoke Wellness is here to help you get on the road to long-term recovery. A sober life begins now!