Drug Rehabilitation Blog


Binge Drinking – It’s Not What You Think!

You’re just going out and having a good time, right? Everyone parties on the weekends, right? Sure, you don’t feel great in the morning, but that happens to everyone, right? Wrong.

Binge Drinking: What it Really Looks Like

Binge drinking is not limited to what you might be picturing in your head. Blacking out, vomiting, being hungover in the morning, or generally making a fool of yourself at that party are not the only examples of what binge drinking really is.

Binge-DrinkingThe National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) defines binge drinking as:

  • “A pattern of drinking that brings blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels to 0.08 g/dL. This typically occurs after 4 drinks for women and 5 drinks for men—in about 2 hours.”

Meanwhile, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines binge drinking as:

  • “Drinking 5 or more alcoholic drinks on the same occasion on at least 1 day in the past 30 days.

For many people, that critera seems all too easy to meet at just one birthday party of backyard bonfire.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have gathered some statistics on bing drinking:

  • One in six U.S. adults binge drinks about four times and month and consumes about eight drinks per binge
  • Approximately 92% of U.S. adults who drink excessively report binge drinking in the past thirty days
  • Although binge drinking is commonly thought of as a problem only among college students, 70% if binge drinking episodes involve adults age 26 years and older
  • Binge drinking is twice as prevalent among men than it is among women
  • Binge drinkers are 14 times more likely to report alcohol-impaired driving than non-binge drinkers
  • It is estimated that about 90% of the alcohol consumed by minors under the age of 21 in the United States is in the form of bing drinking
  • More than half the alcohol consumed by adults in the United States is in the form of binge drinking

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, binge drinking is contributes to a multitude of health problems, such as:

  • Unintentional injuries (e.g., car crashes, falls, burns, drowning)
  • Intentional injuries (e.g., firearm injuries, sexual assault, domestic violence)
  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Unintended pregnancy
  • High blood pressure, stroke, other cardiovascular diseases
  • Liver disease
  • Brain damage

Although it may be scary to take that step, if you suspect you may have a drinking problem, there are many benefits to seeking the help of an inpatient program. Among other perks, you would benefit from:

  • 24 hour supervised care
  • No outside distractions from the recovery process
  • Being surrounded by like-minded people with similar goals
  • An understanding, supportive environment

Binge drinking is not just a party on the weekend with a hangover the next morning. It is a serious affliction that many suffer through alone. That suffering is needless, and there is help available.


  • Amanda

    This can be a hard one to handle with friends and family or even yourself. I have totally been there myself at a party for a couple of hours and the drinks just continue. I do think however that most people are not aware of all these things and what would be considered binge drinking. Definitely not what I was thinking as to what is considered binge drinking. There is really a scary line between causal drinking and binge drinking. Like most things in life, alcohol is best done in moderation.

  • Angie

    My neighbor is a binge drinker. He is a recovering alcoholic who recently had a relapse. He drank non-stop for 3 days. His wife ended up calling for an ambulance because he had alcohol poisoning and had also fallen down the stairs and wasn’t able to get up again. Just before this though, she was able to get him to agree to seek out an inpatient program. He went to hospital for 24 hours to help him re-hydrate, and then they checked him into a 30 day program. Knowing the warning signs is very important. Had we known these ahead of time, he wouldn’t have been drinking for so long without help. She would have caught it early on and gotten him help immediately. I am definitely going to share this information with her.

  • Jonathan

    The beginning of the article is rather funny but very true as people think “oh that’s normal”

    Wow! This cleared up a big misunderstanding for me that I had for a very long time apparently. The fact that it doesn’t take a lot of alcohol to actually become a person that binge drinks. And I say that because if you have a blue long island, that’s about 4 drinks in one. If you have one of those and a shot in 2 hours, you are already binge drinking. And a lot more people drink this much than you realize. Just walk into any bar or nightclub and you will see this easily happening.

    The statistic of it being 90% of the binge drinking is done by people under the age of 21 is shockingly high. That needs to be confronted as it seems very unreal to me that there is that many parents who can be oblivious to the fact that their kids are drinking. It all goes back to the parents actually talking to their kids and educating them. Parent’s aren’t talking to their children now and they just expect the kids to be good boys and girls without doing anything. Parents need to be educated as well as their kids. Education empowers them with the knowledge in order to make the right choices for them.

    It is their life and no one can be forced into a decision but if they have made it, by all means help them in anyway you can and rehab right away if possible.

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