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The Substance Abusing Student

Given the stresses of university life, students are especially susceptible to drug abuse. A variety of substances are available that provide escape from pressing demands. These drugs soon create their own set of problems in the form of addiction, accident proneness, and poor health. The most abused substance is alcohol. Alcohol and other drug-related accidents remain the greatest single cause of preventable death among college students.

Helpful Responses—

  • Be on the alert for signs of drug abuse: preoccupation with drugs; inability to participate in class activities; deteriorating performance in class; periods of memory loss.
  • Share your honest concern for the person.
  • Encourage him/her to seek help.
  • Get necessary help in instances of intoxication.

Less Helpful Responses—

  • Ignoring the problem.
  • Chastising the person; lecturing.
  • Subtlely encouraging the behavior.
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