alcohol-drug-abuse

What is alcohol and drug abuse?

It is the use of alcohol and/or other drugs to the point that it affects one’s relationships, school or work performance, athletic or artistic performance, finances and/or results in legal problems. 

Most drinkers in the United States consume more alcohol in their late teens and early twenties than during any other period in their lives.  Within this age group, the phenomenon of high-risk drinking is more prevalent among college students than non-students and “contributes to an estimated 1,400 student deaths, 500,000 injuries and 70,000 cases of sexual assault each year". (National Advisory Council on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism College Drinking Task Force)

How can I tell if I have a problem?

Do you:

  • Engage in activities or say things, when you’re under the influence that you regret later or don’t remember?
  • Get into verbal or physical arguments or fights after consuming alcohol or drugs?
  • Lie to friends and family about your drinking or other drug use?
  • Engage in high risk behavior while under the influence?

Are you:

  • Having increasing problems with important relationships?
  • Steadily drinking and/or increasing your drug use?
  • Spending more money than you can afford on alcohol or other drugs?
  • Having academic problems such as missing classes, difficulty studying, declining grades or losing interest in school? Having similar problems with work?

Have you:

  • Had an alcohol or drug-use related citation?
  • Been the victim of non-consensual sex while under the influence? (If “yes,” seek help: King County Sexual Assault Resource Center; 888.998.6423 or contact UW Bothell Student Counseling Services.)


Answering “yes” to any of these questions could indicate a problem.  You are encouraged to use the self screening tool (keyword “UWBothell”)

I’m concerned or have concluded that I have an alcohol or drug abuse problem.  Where can I get help?

Addictions Program at Harborview: 206.744.9657
Alcoholics Anonymous: 206.587.2838
Narcotics Anonymous: 206.790.888
UW Bothell Student Mental Health Counseling Services: 425.352.3183
Or speak with your primary care practitioner.

To learn more, obtain a pamphlet or visit the sites listed below.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Fatality Analysis Reporting. 

High-Risk Drinking in College: What We Know and What We Need to Learn. Epidemiology of Alcohol Use Among College Students,” College Drinking – Changing the Culture, September 23, 2005. 

Nonconsensual Sexual Experiences and Alcohol Consumption Among Women Entering College,” Ross, Lisa T., et.al.  Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 17 March 2010. 

Pamphlets available at UW Bothell Student Mental Health Counseling Services:
“Alcohol and Other Drugs: Risky Business,” American College Health Association, 2001.
“How to Cut Down on Your Drinking,” National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, September 2001.
“How to Help a Friend With a Drinking Problem,” American College Health Association, October 2007.