Signs of Hazing and Alcohol Overdose

Some people view hazing and college drinking as a normal rite of passage, but making games of alcohol use can be very dangerous. Take a look at some of the ways to recognize and treat alcohol poisoning in the hazing and college setting.

Many people who enter college or universities (or even in some cases high school) are familiar with the traditional drinking games and the pressure to continue drinking throughout parties, outings, events and more. Many older adults look back at their college years and recall “having a drink or two.”

Avoid Alcohol Overdose and Alcohol Poisoning

The first step to treatment is an ounce of prevention. No one plans to become embarrassingly drunk or suffer permanent illness because of drinking, but alcohol overdose can sneak up on you if you are not careful. Take a look at the following steps to prevent alcohol poisoning:

  • Maintain at least one friend or more who will support you when you feel it is time to stop drinking.
  • Know the limits of your body. Sometimes even the strongest fraternity brothers can have a metabolism that causes them to become drunk faster than the next fellow.
  • Try to pace yourself. It is possible to slip out of the group as everyone is yelling, “Chug! Chug! Chug!” or encouraging the entire room to drink. Not all eyes will be on you all of the time. Use this to your advantage.
  • Eat a solid meal before you drink.
  • Know the symptoms of alcohol overdose (see below).
  • Don’t be afraid to step up. If one of your comrades is showing the signs of alcohol poisoning, you may be the one person to save his or her life. No one will hate you tomorrow if you take someone’s car keys and call a cab. And who wants to be part of a group that judges you for knowing when to quit?

Symptoms of Hazing and Alcohol Poisoning

Hazing can happen in almost any group. Hazing is the set of rituals that is used to bring new members into a fraternity or group. Hazing usually involves embarrassing, difficult, uncomfortable or downright dangerous acts.

But how do you know someone has had too much to drink? The following are symptoms of alcohol poisoning and may lead to coma, death or permanent illness.

  • Inability to wake up
  • Blue skin, lips, fingers or toes (indicates a lack of circulation and can lead to death)
  • Time between breaths, of up to ten seconds or more
  • The person may have his or her eyes open and appear to be looking at you, but they may be “blacked out” either having seizures or systemic failure
  • Seizures
  • Cold sweat or shaking
  • Serious mental confusion, coma or shallow breathing
  • Vomiting, especially excess vomiting that can lead to dehydration, which can cause death.
  • No response to painful stimuli, like being pinched or prodded

These symptoms may come on suddenly and may also cause serious health issues—hesitating to seek help may only cause the person to become more ill—or worse—cause that person to die.

Help for Alcohol and Substance Abuse

We offer a 24 hour, toll-free helpline to counsel you about drinking and its effects. If you are concerned about yourself or a friend, call us today. We offer fully trained counselors that can help you understand treatment options or just offer a helpful voice. You don’t have to worry alone—call today.