Games Make Students More Likely to Abuse Alcohol

March 27, 2008

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When college students play drinking games at parties, their blood alcohol content is higher than when they do not, according to a study that was recently performed by researchers at the University of Michigan and San Diego State University. The environment that the young adults are in and the activities of the party have a significant effect on how much alcohol they consume.

This behavior holds true for women college students, as well as men. The females even drank more alcohol than men when they were at theme parties, which surprised researchers.This is important information because it helps to show how alcohol abuse and binge drinking habits may begin for young adults. Alcohol abuse can eventually lead to alcohol addiction over a period of time if it is allowed to get out of control. Social settings play a large role in this behavior.

A number factors were identified that made the students more likely to engage in patterns of alcohol abuse at parties. Attending a theme party, having a large number of other intoxicated individuals present, having a history of binge drinking, and playing drinking games all made people more likely to drink larger quantities of alcohol. To find this information, researchers observed 1304 college students attending 66 parties with alcohol over a period of three semesters.

Most studies on alcohol abuse require participants to fill out a survey about their drinking habits. They can be asked to recall how much alcohol they consumed days or even months before they complete the survey. This study is the first of its kind to actually go out into the field and observe behaviors of alcohol consumption. Researchers watched college students drinking at parties and administered breathalyzer tests to get actual data on how much alcohol they were drinking for this study.

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