Last time we discussed mental and physical wellness as you navigate your new world as a college student. For some, that is the easy part! In the second part of our series, we discuss the crazy world of drugs and sex and how to take charge and protect yourself.
There’s no doubt that you might get pressured into doing things you might not necessarily want to. And while the pressure to drink or take drugs might not be as high as some of the teen movies might suggest, it can be tough to say no in the moment. So, what is the harm in saying yes?
Smoking. Dipping. Vaping. While it is legal if you’re over 18, it all has serious health consequences. Cancer, coronary heart disease, stroke, and blood clots are just a few of the very serious health issues that are related to the consumption of tobacco. The easiest way to quit smoking is to never start. But, if you’re long since past that road, work on developing a plan to help you quit.
Seemingly, everyone around you is doing it, so why not you? Well, if you’re caught drinking underage, you can be charged with possession and consumption which can result in fines, community service, mandatory alcohol awareness classes, suspension of your driver’s license, and possible jail time. On top of the legal consequences, your school may have the option to suspend or expel you.
And always remember, if you do decide to participate in drinking and you think it’s becoming a problem, it’s okay to seek help.
If you are found in possession of illegal drugs, and in some cases drug paraphernalia, not only could you be charged with a felony, you may be kicked out of school. In cases of marijuana in legalized states, be sure to check your school’s policy before you try. Some schools have a zero tolerance, even in the cases of state legality.
For many, going away to college is the beginning of their life as a sexually active person. While there is nothing wrong with experimenting with sex and your sexuality, it is of vital importance to stay safe — not only for your physical health, but your mental health as well.
No matter what the situation is, you are under no obligation to continue a sexual relationship or experience if you do not want to. You are ALWAYS allowed to say “No,” or “Stop.” Anyone that tries to convince, guilt, or force you into a sexual situation is not a trusted person to be around.
If you find yourself in a situation where you feel uncomfortable, do everything you can to leave.
Being in charge of your sexual health is a big responsibility that must be taken seriously. And only YOU are in charge of it! And lucky for you, there are no shortages of ways to stay safe.
If you do decide to be sexually active, there is always a chance of having a non-optimal outcome, no matter how careful you are. The only way to prevent contracting an STI or having an unwanted pregnancy is to abstain from sex altogether. But, if you are sexually active and you think you might have contracted an STI, STD, or have become pregnant, contact a medical professional as soon as possible to discuss all the options available to you. The sooner you can get treatment and make the right decisions for you and your future, the better.
The medical professionals at Miami Center Of Excellence are always here to guide you as you navigate your new world and to give you unbiased medical advice. Give us a call or make an appointment online.