College can be stressful, dealing with classes, studying, work and other extra-curricular activities. You see other people drinking alcohol or using drugs and lots of it --- beer, shots, something, anything to get a buzz and you figure it's OK. Yet when alcohol or drugs becomes your only means of feeling good and bonding with friends, is it too much?
Excessive drinking or binge drinking -consuming five or more drinks in one setting- is not cool or safe. So you're drunk... but did you realize that you're also suffering from acute alcohol poisoning? It's a medical condition that affects the body's central nervous system. It slows breathing, heart rate and gag reflex, and ultimately can cause death.
Beyond that, the most important thing for friends who witness someone "passing out" from too much alcohol or from drug use is to get them medical treatment - call 911 or campus police.
Know the signs and symptoms of alcohol poisoning or drug overdose:
Slow or irregular breathing (fewer than eight breaths/minute or more than 10 seconds between breaths)
Blue-tinged skin or pale skin
Low body temperature (hypothermia)
Call 911 - Just one of these symptoms is reason enough to call for help.
If you call for help the worst thing that can happen is your friend stays alive. If you don't make that call, the worst thing that can happen is death!