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2016-2017 Catalog


Alcohol and Drug Related Programs on Campus

Each semester, the Student Life offices of Front Range Community College offer information to students, faculty, and staff on the effects of drug and alcohol use. Programs include access to education, training, and treatment resources in the community.

Health Risks of Alcohol and Drug Use

Alcohol

Alcohol goes directly into the bloodstream, physically affecting the whole body. Some illnesses and health problems caused by alcohol include:

  • Hangovers. Headaches, nausea, vomiting, aches and pains all result from drinking too much. Drinking to the point of drunkenness makes you sick.
  • Weight gain. Alcohol is not water. A beer has about 150 "empty" calories that provide few if any nutrients.
  • High blood pressure. Along with being overweight, high blood pressure is associated with many serious health problems.
  • Depressed immune system. Impaired immunity makes you more likely to contract viral illnesses such as flu and infections.
  • Cancer. 2-4% of all cancer cases are related to alcohol. Upper digestive tract cancers are the most common, hitting the esophagus, mouth, larynx, and pharynx. Women who drink prior to menopause are more likely to develop breast cancer. Your risk of skin cancer doubles if you drink slightly more than "moderate levels". Some studies implicate alcohol in colon, stomach, pancreas and lung cancer.
  • Liver disease. Heavy drinking can cause fatty liver, hepatitis, cirrhosis and cancer of the liver. The liver breaks down alcohol at the rate of only one drink per hour.
  • Alcohol poisoning. Drinking large amounts can result in alcohol poisoning, which causes unconsciousness and even death. Breathing slows, and the skin becomes cold and may look blue. Don't let a person in this condition "sleep it off". Call 911.
  • Heart or respiratory failure. Excessive drinking can have serious results. Heart or respiratory failure often means death.

Other long-term effects of heavy alcohol use include loss of appetite, vitamin deficiencies, stomach ailments, sexual impotence, central nervous system damage, and memory loss.

Drugs

Like many prescription drugs, "recreation" drugs come with potentially harmful side effects that can have serious and long-term effects on your health. High doses of many of the drugs, or impure or more dangerous substitutes for these drugs, can cause immediate life-threatening health problems such as heart attack, respiratory failure, and coma. Combining drugs with each other or with alcohol is especially dangerous.

  • Barbiturates and tranquilizers are commonly abused prescription drugs. They can cause hangover-like symptoms, nausea, seizures, and coma. Overdose or mixing these drugs with alcohol can be fatal.
  • Cocaine can cause such long-term problems as tremors, seizures, psychosis, and heart or respiratory failure.
  • LSD can cause nausea, rapid heart rate, depression, and disorientation. Long-term effects include paranoia and psychosis.
  • Marijuana and hashish can cause rapid heart rate and memory impairment soon after use. Long-term effects include cognitive problems, infertility, weakened immune system, and possible lung damage.
  • Narcotics such as heroin can bring on respiratory and circulatory depression, dizziness, impotence, constipation, and withdrawal sickness. Overdoses can lead to seizures and death.
  • PCP, in addition to triggering unpredictable and violent behavior, can cause dizziness, numbness, high heart rate and blood pressure, convulsions, and in high amounts fatal heart and lung failure or ruptured blood vessels.
  • Stimulants such as amphetamines have health effects that include high heart rate and blood pressure, headache, blurred vision, dizziness, impotence, skin disorders, tremors, seizures, and psychosis.
  • Information on Health Risks of Alcohol and Drug Use adapted from the Bowles Center for Alcohol Studies: University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

Resources for Students and Employees

Use of drugs and alcohol often come with legal, personal, and academic consequences. If a student or employee has questions about alcohol or drug use and is in need of counseling, treatment, or rehabilitation programs, visit http://www.frontrange.edu/being-a-student/campus-safety or one of these community resources: 

http://drugabuse.com

Westminster/Denver

www.uch.edu/conditions/addictions

Boulder/Longmont

www.bouldercounty.org/family/addiction/pages/default.aspx

Fort Collins

http://touchstonehealthpartners.org/