Safety during Spring Break Important for Student Health, Well-being

Spring break is the time of year college students can relieve their anxieties after midterm tests and count the days until the end of the semester.

Upon arrival at their destination, they often settle into their condo or beach house. After being on the road for long stretches, they get as much rest as possible before adventuring into the night life.

College students are anxious to get to different bars and night clubs. College students often “hook up” while vacationing for the week.

At the same time, the chances of contracting a sexually transmitted disease or having an unexpected pregnancy increase during spring break.

According to a Poynter article, during spring break, the average male reportedly drinks 18 alcoholic drinks per day and the average female 10 drinks per day.

With the combination of sex and alcohol, it is safe to say sound judgment and decision-making is swept under the rug.

Several risk factors for STDs are common when alcohol influences sexual behavior. People are likely to have multiple sex partners, engaging in unprotected sex and combining substance use with sexual activity.

In 2011, 5,263 women were diagnosed with gonorrhea, 268 men were diagnosed with syphilis, and a combined 30,958 women and men were diagnosed with chlamydia.

The Baton Rouge metropolitan area ranks No. 1 in the nation in new AIDS cases and New Orleans ranks in the top five, according to the nichollsworth.com.

Imagine how many people you can encounter and potentially have a one-night stand with seven days straight if you include all the people your parters have had unprotected sex with.

It is best to be sexually responsible in these situations. Everyone has heard the saying, “What goes on during spring break stays there,” but you do not want to leave the break with a disease you didn’t have before.

Whether we are arriving to the university as a freshmen or a senior graduating in May, you have to plan for a positive future. You don’t want to explain to your better half about the memories you want to leave in Panama.

If you are going to have fun, just make sure that you are safe. You can contract different skin- based STDs through body fluids and skin to skin contact.

You only get lucky so many times. According to research by JR Stine, 14 percent of women are likely to become infected after 30 sexual encounters with an infected partner. The expected risk escalates to 37 percent after that, even with perfect condom use.

I don’t want to scare you. Spring break is a time to make long-term friends and build friendships with your colleagues, but be smart about the decisions you make. If you drink, do not drive. if you have sex, use protection.

Decisions about your future and you career are important, especially for graduating college students. No one wants to have to ask “what if i made better decisions and didn’t unintentionally have a child.”

Make good decisions and have a fun spring break.

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