The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism defines binge drinking as a pattern of drinking that brings a person’s blood alcohol concentration to 0.08 grams percent or above. When compared to the national binge drinking rate (17%), Fond du Lac County’s binge drinking rate (22%) is elevated. That amounts to approximately one in every five Fond du Lac County residents participating in binge drinking. Excessive alcohol consumption is the third leading cause of preventable death in the United States.
Although binge drinking is a nationwide problem, what can we do to reduce this locally? It is important to note that everyone can help in the prevention of binge drinking. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help prevent binge drinking.
- Start by drinking a soda or other non alcoholic drinks
- Drink slowly and be aware of what a “standard drink” really is
- Go out with a friend who doesn’t drink or who has similar low limits in mind
- Limit the amount of cash you bring out and leave your credit card at home
- Knowing what triggers binge drinking, and avoiding/preparing for these triggers
- Remember that drinking is not a competition, nor is it a way to look cool
- Resist pressure from others around you
Drug Free Communities (DFC) of Fond du Lac County a local coalition has already begun to implement strategies to prevent and reduce binge drinking in our county. DFC has built partnerships with law enforcement, health care, and other agencies in efforts to reduce binge drinking. In addition, youth action groups including, Students Taking Action Against Negative Decisions (STAAND) have promoted awareness campaigns to help educate both the youth and other community members.
With your help, as a community, the binge drinking rate of Fond du Lac County can be reduced and many of its outcomes such as unplanned pregnancies, assaults, drunk driving and more can be prevented.
For more information please visit http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/BingeDrinking/index.html. Further community recommendations can be found at http://www.thecommunityguide.org/alcohol