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6 Substance Abuse Resources For College Students Struggling With Alcoholism

Content warning: This article discusses alcohol and addiction. It’s often considered the “norm” for college students to go out and drink often. For many, excessive drinking is brushed off as being  “a part of the college experience,” but in reality, it’s much more serious. Sometimes, partying can cause you to tailspin into addiction. And, if you’re a college student struggling with alcoholism, know that you’re not alone — and there are resources that can help you. 

College alcoholism affects millions of students every year, and the Alcohol Rehab Guide estimates that 50% of those students engage in binge drinking — consuming too much alcohol in too little time.

The truth is that normalizing the need to go out and drink frequently in your young adult years can lead to serious physical and emotional damage. This is why it’s important to focus on public awareness as well as spreading information about treatment for alcoholism during April, which is Alcohol Awareness Month

Many students who are struggling with alcoholism face the additional challenge of not knowing where to start on their road to recovery. Luckily, there are many resources available to help guide those suffering from addiction and connect them to treatment teams and support systems. 

SMART Recovery 

Another useful online source is SMART Recovery. This organization is great for connecting those in recovery to meetings and other support groups. The site is really easy to use too, just type in your City, State, or Province on the site’s homepage and it will find you a “SMART Meeting” in your area.

Outpatient Programs 

One option for alcohol recovery involves treatment programs. These can include things like an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) or a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). While these options may be recommended by medical professionals involved in an individual treatment plan, American Addiction Center offers a page on their site that is very informative about what an IOP/PHP is, who is best suited for the program, and more.

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)

The NIAAA is a great tool for both treatment-seeking individuals as well as friends and family. This site provides a lot of material for learning about the causes, effects, and prevention of excessive alcohol use. If you’re someone interested in learning more about alcohol use and disorder, the National Institute is the best place to go.

Alcohol Rehab Guide

The Alcohol Rehab Guide is a great online source that provides treatment and support options. They help connect patients to rehab centers, provide online addiction therapy, and can aid in helping patients find a therapist or other mental health professional. They also have extensive resources that can help answer any questions related to the recovery process, including live phone lines where treatment providers will help you take the first steps to get help.

Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.)

Alcoholics Anonymous is one of the best resources for those recovering from alcohol addiction. A.A. is a national organization where groups of people meet to help solve their drinking problems. There are no age, education, or financial restrictions to participate — membership is open to everyone. You can find meetings near you on the official A.A. website and if the options don’t work for a student’s schedule, A.A. also hosts online groups.

University Counseling Services 

One of the best resources for a student can be found through their own college. Many universities offer counseling services for their students which are usually free. These counselors can help connect you with therapists and other professionals in the area. This is a great service to take advantage of and it’s not a difficult process either. Usually, information on where to find the counseling center and how to set up an intake appointment can be found on the university site or through a student portal. 

It’s important to take care of yourself and your health. If you’re a college student struggling with addiction, these six resources are a great starting point. Reaching out to medical professionals or even to family and friends can also help you on your road to recovery. 

If you or someone you know is seeking help for substance use, call the SAMHSA National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP(4357).

Hi, my name is Emily and I'm an Editing, Writing, and Media major at FSU. When I'm not in class, you can find me at a coffee shop on my 3rd cup of coffee. I also love reading, dancing, and anything related to music!