April is Alcohol Awareness Month, an awareness month especially relevant for college students. Between exams and pop quizzes and presentations, many of us take advantage of every party and getaway to loosen up with some alcohol and take each other less seriously. But too much of everything is always a problem. According to Alcohol.org, 88,000 people die every year from alcohol-related deaths. Of those 88,000 deaths, 1,825 of them are college-aged adults.
Binge drinking is defined as consuming a lot of alcohol for over two hours. For men, this is five drinks or more, and for women, it is four drinks or more in two hours, according to Alcohol.org.
Is it possible to have fun without getting drunk? Of course. Here’s how.
1. Get a breathalyzer to keep yourself accountable
Drinking will raise your blood alcohol level. Once your BAC reaches 0.8, you’re considered impaired and unfit to drive. Binge drinking will raise your BAC to 0.8 or more. It’s totally possible to have fun at parties without drinking at all, but if you are, keep track with a breathalyzer.
2.Party with responsible friends
It’s a lot harder to get drunk when you’re surrounded by people that care for you and want you to be healthy. Everyone has that one friend (or at least they should) that goes out and has fun but drinks minimally to none. Stick around that friend for the night.
3. Eat before you go
Fill your stomach with foods far more nutritious than ethanol. You can also being healthy packaged snacks to much on. Or if you really don’t want to miss out on indulging, bring some KitKats, Sweet Tarts or other flavorful candies.
It’s the healthier version of bring your own drink–bring your own water. And it doesn’t have to be plain Dasani or Macon tap water (even though our tap water has been judged as being one of the best in the nation, according to The Telegraph). Bring some sparkling water or any drink that you enjoy and pour your own glass. Sparkling water tastes way better than alcohol anyways.
If you need something to hold while you’re partying, keep your red cup of sparkling water near you as a clutch. That way you won’t feel left out for not drowning your body in cheap alcohol.
5. Leave the party
Some of the parties in college are total busts. And it might seem like the only way you can feel comfortable enough to dance or have fun is to drink. In that case, it might be better just to leave the party.
Sometimes you’ll learn that you can’t have fun or be yourself at parties without over-drinking. It might be time to leave and find something that you enjoy doing without having to lean on alcohol. Have a scary movie night or anime marathon with your friends instead. Even though drinking is part of the social culture in college, you don’t have to drink yourself to drunkenness to have fun.