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G3O5. Decrease those struggling with substance abuse

Reduce the number of reports of binge drinking, 18+ years of age

Current Value




Line Bar Comparison

Story Behind the Curve

Source:  Last accessed 11 July 2020

Definition: Percentage of adults who reported binge drinking (four or more [females] or five or more [males] drinks on one occasion in the past 30 days) or heavy drinking (eight or more [females] or 15 or more [males] drinks per week) 


Excessive drinking comes with short- and long-term risks. Short-term risks include:

Long-term risks include:


Healthy People 2030 has multiple alcohol-related goals, including:

  • Reducing the proportion of people aged 21 years and over who engaged in binge drinking in the past month.
  • Reducing the proportion of people who had alcohol use disorder in the past year.
  • Reducing the proportion of motor vehicle crash deaths that involve a drunk driver.

Death rates from excessive drinking increased significantly between 2000 and 2019. An estimated 95,000 people die every year from alcohol-attributable causes, making it the third-leading preventable cause of death in the United States, behind tobacco and poor diet/physical inactivity. Excessive drinking is responsible for an average of 261 deaths per day, which is equal to 2.8 million years of potential life lost per year. Excessive alcohol use cost the United States a total of $249 billion in 2010.


The prevalence of excessive drinking is higher among:

  • Males than females.
  • Adults ages 18-44 compared with adults ages 45 and older. 
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, Hispanic and white adults compared with Asian adults.
  • Adults ages 25 and older with an annual household income of $75,000 or higher compared with adults with lower income levels.

What Works

Source:  Last accessed 11 July 2020 


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that some people not drink at all, including anyone younger than 21 and those who are pregnant. For those who do drink, using moderation when consuming alcohol can reduce the risk of adverse health outcomes. More detailed recommendations for moderate drinking are provided by the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that clinicians screen adults ages 18 and older for unhealthy alcohol use and provide those with unhealthy alcohol use with brief behavioral counseling interventions. 

A variety of evidence-based strategies have been shown to effectively reduce excessive drinking and related health and social costs:


  • Nationally, 1 out of 4 youth ages 18-24 engage in binge drinking (CDC, 2018)
  • In Indiana, 49% of college students age 18-21 reported consuming alcohol in the past month  (Indiana College Substance Use Survey, 2019)
  • 33% of Indiana college students reported binge drinking in the past two weeks (Indiana College Substance Use Survey, 2019)
  • First-year college students are at higher risk for drinking

Health risks

  • Alcohol poisoning leading to injury or death
  • Irregular heartbeat or heart failure
  • Vomiting/choking on your own vomit
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels)
  • Hangover
  • Blacking out
  • Engaging in unprotected sex
  • Missing classes or assignments
  • Being hurt or injured because of your or others’ drinking

Long-term health risks

  • Anemia and a suppressed immune system
  • Decreased calcium absorption, leading to weak bones
  • Increased risk of anxiety and depression
  • Reduced fertility in men and women
  • Drinking while pregnant can lead to fetal alcohol syndrome
  • Malnutrition, as vitamins and nutrients are not able to be absorbed and appetite is decreased 

Source:  Last accessed 28 july 2022

Corrective Action

  • What can a parent of college students do?
    • Know the neighborhood where your student lives at college – how many bars are in the area?
    • Do these bars have drink specials like “penny ‘til you pee” or “quarter beer”?
    • What office or department on campus can provide resources to you and your student? These are usually residence life, student wellness or counseling offices.
    • Does your student’s school have policies against underage drinking? What are the consequences for getting caught? Are parents informed?
    • What programs are in place to help your student make the best decisions about drinking?
  • Tips for parents
    • Have regular communication – set times to text or call
    • Encourage open communication on alcohol use – don’t make it a “one time” lecture
    • Contact the office that provides help and resources, if you or your student should need it
    • Make sure your student knows the signs of alcohol poisoning and what to do
    • Make sure your student has “an escape plan” if they’re at a party and want to leave 

Source:  Last accessed 28 july 2022

PoE  (Accessive drinking graph. Last accessed 28 July 2022; 02/15/2023)

Clear Impact Suite is an easy-to-use, web-based software platform that helps your staff collaborate with external stakeholders and community partners by utilizing the combination of data collection, performance reporting, and program planning.

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