Solitary Binge Drinking and Suicidal Behavior

Gonzalez, V. M. (2012). Association of solitary binge drinking and suicidal behavior among emerging adult college students. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1037/a0026916

Research indicates that excessive alcohol consumption is a problem in many parts of the world and among both younger and older adults.  In this study, Gonzalez (2012) investigated binge drinking in American college students and its association with suicidal behavior. Participants were university students between the ages of 18 and 25 years old who were sampled from two studies of college drinkers.  Measures assessed alcohol consumption, suicide attempt history, and suicidal ideation.  Results showed that students with a history of suicide attempts were four times more likely to be solitary than social binge drinkers.  Gonzalez suggested that for students who are solitary binge drinkers, intervention programs should not only target alcohol use, but should include suicide prevention efforts as well.

Making Connections

Binge drinking
Mental health
Substance abuse

Media Supplement

Key facts about binge drinking are available from the CDC.

Some parents believe that if they let their kids drink alcohol at home, they will learn to drink responsibly. As this NPR podcast explains, this notion is not supported by recent studies of teen drinking. See: French Lessons: Why Letting Kids Drink At Home Isn't 'Tres Bien'. [4 min 14 sec]