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THE STALL SEAT JOURNAL

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Created and posted by students and staff from the VCU Wellness Resource Center  © 2014

Vol. MMXIV • August 2014

VCU Wellness Resource Center

815 S. Cathedral Place Richmond VA 23284

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804-828-WELL

www.thewell.vcu.edu

ll students — incoming freshmen, returning, transfer, graduate/professional and off-campus — are invited. Tons of fun and diverse events will be happening all around both campuses. You’ll get a raffle ticket at many of the events, which you can trade in for a chance to win great prizes such as iPads, flat-screen TVs, and more. Collect 10 raffle tickets (two of each of the five colors) for a chance to win the Grand Prize: One semester of FREE undergraduate in-state TUITION!

Welcome Week 2014: Aug 16–24!

Read on for a few highlights from more than 150 Welcome Week events! Download the 2014 VCU Welcome Week Guidebook app at welcomeweek.vcu.edu

HIGHLIGHTS

or use this QR code for dates, times, and program information.

Student Organization and Volunteer Opportunities (SOVO) Fair — Bring all your Welcome Week raffle tickets for a chance to win great prizes. Check out hundreds of student organizations, find a community agency where you can volunteer, and meet departments from across campus! Block Party in Monroe Park — Bring your VCU Card, get a meal, meet new people, take a selfie in the photobooth. Play on inflatables, get free stuff and hear great local DJs!

Rams in Recovery Gelato Social — Open to students in recovery and their allies.

Casino Night — Take your turn at the Blackjack, Texas Hold ’Em, Bingo, Craps, Poker and Roulette tables! Food and Prizes! Playfair — Better than speeddating! Guarantees you’ll walk away with new friends and some VCU spirit!

Salsa on the Plaza — Dance party, anyone?

New Student Convocation and Ram Spirit Walk, featuring keynote speaker David Eggers, author of this year’s summer reading book, The Circle. FREE T-SHIRT! Love ’n’ Liquor: A VCU Tradition — You won’t want to miss this! ) More details: www.welcomeweek. vcu.edu or tweet at @

vcuwelcomeweek

Freshmen 18+:

You’re invited to Spit for Science, a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. • Complete the online survey sent to your VCU email. • Pick up $10 payment and free T-shirt at the Franklin Street Gym, B43, Monday–Friday, Aug. 18–29, 11:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. • Give an optional DNA (saliva) sample for another $10. • Until Aug 29 ONLY: Receive the fastest service! Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu.


THE STALL SEAT JOURNAL

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Created and posted by students and staff from the VCU Wellness Resource Center  © 2014

VCU Wellness Resource Center

815 S. Cathedral Place Richmond VA 23284

804-828-WELL

www.thewell.vcu.edu

Special Bike Edition

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his past May, the USA Cycling Collegiate Road Nationals were held in Richmond. Three VCU students and Cycling Club members competed in the races: Alena Pugacheva, Chris Jones and Evan Lang. Chris Jones won the Individual time trial.

OAP: RENT a Bike

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CU Recreational Sports’ Outdoor Adventure Program (OAP) rents outdoor equipment to the VCU community. Rent Fuji mountain and road bikes for the day or for weekend trips at very affordable prices! OAP also can assist with information on local riding destinations, cycling resources, and riding tips.

The 2015 Road World Championships are slated to begin in September 2015. Charter 2015, an initiative announced by Richmond 2015 and RideFinders, recognizes and encourages businesses and organizations within the region to be more bike-friendly. VCU was certified as a Charter 2015 silver level member.

VCU RamBikes and OAP: FIX a Bike

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CU RamBikes and the OAP Bike Shop are free resources available to VCU students, faculty and staff. RamBikes and OAP staff can help you maintain and repair your bike: • One-on-one instruction by trained bike mechanics • Bike repair workshops • Absolutely free use of shop tools, stands and equipment VCU RamBikes is located at 201 N. Belvidere St. The OAP Bike Shop is located in the Outing Rental Center, 130 S. Linden St.

Sharrow the Road

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harrows, the white symbols of a bike and chevron painted on some roads around VCU, are Shared Roadway Bicycle Markings — “sharrows” for short.

Bike lanes set aside for bicyclists are marked by a solid white line, but lanes marked with sharrows are different. Sharrows alert other road users to expect bicyclists to occupy travel lanes. They also remind bicyclists to ride toward the center of the lane — away from parked cars — to avoid being struck by a suddenly opened car door. (Car drivers, YOU are responsible if such an accident occurs. Look before you open a car door into a traffic lane.) Sharrows are also used in situations where drivers may not expect bicyclists, such as at intersections with multiple turn lanes.

New yard stick for bike safety: 3 feet is law

VCU BIKE FACTS

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tarting July 1, motorists need to give bicyclists more room on Virginia roads — 3 feet not 2 — or face getting a ticket. Law enforcement plans to monitor motorists, and will issue citations

Q. How many VCU places provide air for your tires? A. 15 • Six electric air compressors, three on each campus • Five Dero Fixit self-repair stations with hand pumps, three on the Monroe Park Campus and two on the MCV Campus • Two hand pumps for check out — at University Student Commons and Hunton Student Center • Hand pumps to use at the RamBikes shop and at the OAP Outing Rental Center

BUI: Biking Under the Influence

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he vast majority of VCU students do not drink alcohol and drive. Taking steps to avoid a DUI is just a no brainer (pun intended). Biking puts your brain even more on the line. It just makes sense that most students are smart enough to avoid that risk, too.

How is a Bike Like a Book?

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t VCU, both bikes and books can be checked out from the library! VCU RamBikes, VCU Goes Green, and VCU Libraries collaborated to create the Bike Loan Program. Twelve yellow-and-black loan bikes are available: • 8 stationed on designated racks outside James B. Cabell Library (at the Mobility Hub on Floyd) • 4 at the Tompkins-McCaw Library (outside the 13th Street entrance). You can check out a bike for a 24-hour period at the library service desk. Students must sign a liability waiver and receive a helmet and u-lock to be returned with the bike. For more information, contact rambikes@vcu.edu.

if a driver clearly could move 3 feet away from a bicyclist when passing without obstacle. Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles statistics show that in 2013, eight people died and more than

Article based on a report by NBC12 News on June 26, 2014

600 people were injured in crashes involving bicycles on Virginia roads. Getting the word out about the new law is a priority. Meanwhile, bicylists probably want to keep watch over their shoulders and signal turns.


THE STALL SEAT JOURNAL

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Vol MMXIV • September 2014

Introducing....

Alcohol 101 with a data dump

and movies, but don’t do a great job of showing you how to maximize fun and minimize harm if you choose to drink. Second, each edition will highlight data about VCU students collected in two very different types of research projects. Both studies follow scientific methods, and the research teams love to share and talk about their data. Contact the folks below for more info. And remember to check out a different stall next time to get our first Data Dump.

Illustration by Gwendolyn Wood

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elcome back! This year the regular Stall Seat Journal will alternate in bathrooms with a special series called “Alcohol 101 with a Data Dump” (pun intended). If you don’t stall hop, consider hopping this semester to diversify your bathroom reading experience! The Alcohol 101 series has two main goals: First, we will share facts about alcohol, genetics and biology so you can make informed choices. In America we show you a lot of alcohol in commercials, sitcoms

VCU Participation in NCHA Research Team: The Well Staff www.thewell.vcu.edu/research.html email: TheWell@vcu.edu Instrument: American College Health Association’s National College Health Assessment (view survey: www.achancha.org) Purpose of Study: Assess wide variety of health issues important to VCU students and implement programs to maximize the health on campus Methodology * Cross sectional study since 2009 * Each spring a list of 5,000 randomly selected students are chosen from ALL enrolled students — grads and undergrads * About 1,000–1,300 participants each year

Research Team: Spit for Science Research Team Primary investigators Dr. Danielle Dick and Dr. Ken Kendler www.spit4science.vcu.edu email: spit4science@vcu.edu Instrument: Created by the S4S team using standardized instruments measuring many factors related to college student behavioral health Purpose of Study: To understand why some people are more likely than others to develop problems associated with the use of alcohol and other substances, and difficulties with emotional health. Methodology * Longitudinal study started in 2011 * Incoming freshmen invited to participate each fall with followup surveys each spring as they go through college * Total of 7,600+ participants to date

Suicide Prevention Month

You can still Spit for Science!

A variety of events will occur Sept. 10–Oct. 6. Please see University Counseling Services [www.students.vcu. edu/counseling] for details. On Sept 22, the ALIVE interactive fair will occur in the Commons Plaza MPC. Most students learn skills to over come hard times. Please contact UCS 804-848-6200 if concerned about yourself or a friend.

Freshmen 18+ can still participate in a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. How? * Complete the online survey emailed to your VCU account. * Pick up your $10 payment and T-shirt at the University Student Commons Kiosk, Monday–Friday, 12:30-4:30 pm. * While there, you can provide a DNA (saliva) sample for another $10. Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu

Eat healthy for less Byrd House Market (Tuesdays 3:30–7 pm) now offering discounted produce deal to faculty/staff as well as students! Bring $10 + VCU ID to 980 Idlewood Ave.


ALCOHOL 101

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

with a data dump

September 2014

Situational Tolerance

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avlov and his drooling dogs can teach us a lot about alcohol as well as tolerance, overdoses and cravings. While our bodies don’t drool when they see alcohol (well, at least not most of us anyway), we still develop conditioned responses. If every weekend we expose our bodies to the same drink, the same taste, the same friends’ faces and similar drinking places, over time our body “learns” to associate environmental cues with alcohol’s sedative effect. When cued by the same drinking triggers, over time the nervous system anticipates the impending sedation and, even before the first drink is taken, the body compensates by speeding up. This compensatory response accounts for why over time more drinks are needed to get the usual buzz. It’s called situational or learned tolerance.

Overdoses

Situational tolerance is strongly related to overdoses in regular users. Let’s say you go on spring break, travel abroad, move from home to college, or drink a different tasting drink, and the cues for situational tolerance are gone. The body fails to anticipate the sedative effect and fails to compensate. If the usual amount is consumed in an unusual environment, an overdose is very, very possible. This phenomenon is documented by research by Siegel and Ramos. For an interesting description of this research, check out the youtube video “Situational Tolerance” by Dr. Jason Kilmer.

So what?

Knowledge is power. Recognizing that a new situation or a novel beverage is likely to reduce tolerance, a drinker can choose

to drink more slowly or consume less in the hope of avoiding overdoses (or at least avoiding embarrassing facebook pictures and regretted tattoos. Did you know MOM upside down spells WOW?)

Cravings & Triggers

This same “situational tolerance” has a lot to do with cravings and how hard it is to change behavior. Situational tolerance occurs for all drugs — for depressants such as prescription narcotics and heroin and for stimulants like caffeine or Adderall. Smokers know well which “situational triggers” make them crave nicotine. Once recognized, triggers can be avoided or altered. There are a ton of creative and useful strategies for dealing with cravings, breaking the cycle of use, and reducing situational tolerance. The Well website has a free online self assessment and and the staff loves to chat individually with students about all things alcohol/drug related. Email: kkdonovan@vcu.edu

What’s a standard drink?

Please note for all alcohol research both at VCU and nationally, a “standard drink” is defined this way:

12 oz. of beer

5 oz. of wine

1.5 oz of liquor

Research-based low-risk alcohol use guidelines From a fairly cool, non-judgmental interactive website, rethinkingdrinking.niaaa.nih.gov.

Women and Men:

Zero drinks if you are driving, have liver disease, take multiple meds, are in recovery or are going on a job interview. (We made that last one up, but it makes sense to us.) And, of course, pregnant women.

Women:

One drink if you drink regularly, because at two per day breast cancer risks go up and at three per day blood pressure goes up. Three drinks or fewer if you drink only occasionally. (Sorry, you can’t save all seven for Friday.) Statistically, four or more drinks increases a woman’s risk for injuries, accidents, and illnesses including alcoholism.

Men:

Two drinks if you drink regularly, because at three per day blood pressure goes up and at four per day liver disease increases. Four drinks or fewer if you drink only occasionally, because five or more is associated with injuries, accidents, and illnesses including alcoholism.

VCU Participation in NCHA Data Source – The Well’s NCHA Spring 2014 data cross-sectional random campus data (n=1,104) Questions? email thewell@vcu.edu Q10*: How many drinks did you have the last time you partied/socialized? • Females: 62.5% drank 0–3 drinks and were within the low-risk guidelines • Males: 56.3% drank 0-4 drinks and were within the low-risk guidelines

Q8A5*: In the past 30 days, how many days did you use alcohol? • Females: Only 1% drank alcohol daily • Males: Only 2.4% drank alcohol daily *Data analysis for Q10 &Q8 is for undergrads, freshman–senior (n=820)

Data Source – Spit for Science: The VCU Student Survey Questions? email spit4science@vcu.edu

How often do you drink?

2%, 4+ times/week Data Source: S4S Spring Sophomore Follow-up (2011 & 2012 cohorts), n=2,470, item: Y2S_alc_5

24%, never

15%, 2-3 times/ week

30%, monthly or less 29%, 2-4 times/ month


ALCOHOL 101 with a data dump

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

October 2014

Biological response to alcohol

Are you a low responder or a high responder? And why does it matter?

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ot everyone responds to alcohol the same way. While people can choose to drink or not, once alcohol is consumed, genetics is a major factor in how the body metabolizes and responds to alcohol. Ever noticed how from the very first drink, some people can drink a lot and feel it less than their friends? Researchers call these folks low responders. (Note: This is not the same as “tolerance,” where people gradually increase how much they can drink over time with practice.) For others, a few drinks gets them drunk and then.... They fall asleep. These folks are high responders.

Why biological response matters

People don’t start out using alcohol and think, “Hey, I want to be an alcoholic.” Genetic difference like low response can set people up for heavy use simply because they need more to feel

B. Personal experience. If you have drunk alcohol, you can use a research tool developed by Dr. Marc Schuckit called the “Self Report of the Effects of Alcohol (SRE)” questionnaire: • Think back to the first five times you drank. (Many people have not drunk alcohol on five occasions, so this scale wouldn’t pertain.) • How many standard drinks* did it take before you (1) felt any effect, (2) felt dizzy or slurred your speech, (3) stumbled, and (4) fell asleep or passed out. Add up your responses and divide by the A. Family. If you never have number of questions you were drunk alcohol, you can’t deterable to answer. mine for sure what your body’s Example 1: If it took 1 beer to response will be, but you can feel an effect, 3 beers to feel make an educated prediction. Redizzy or slur speech, and 4 to search shows that low response stumble, but you never drank runs in families. If your identical to the point of passing out, the twin is a low responder there is a equation would be 8 drinks strong chance that you will be too. divided by 3 questions = 2.67 The low response trait is seen in average number of drinks/ef40% of sons and daughters of fect. alcoholics but in less than 10% of Example 2: If it took 2 drinks children of non-alcoholics. to feel an effect, 4 drinks a buzz. Research suggests that genetics explains about 60% of the risk for problems with alcohol while environmental factors explain the other 40%. If you have a family history of alcoholism in a close family member, your risk of alcoholism, if you drink, is two to four times higher than someone with no family history. If you have a family history of alcoholism and you are a low responder, your risk for addiction is about 60%. Totally not fair.

Two ways to predict/assess biological response

to slur speech, 5 drinks to stumble and 8 drinks to pass out, the equation would be 17 drinks divided by 4 questions = 4.25 average number of drinks/effect. The higher number of drinks/ effect (and the lower the effect per drink), the more likely it is you are a low responder.

So what?

Genetics is NOT destiny. While life isn’t always fair — why do some people have cancer or type I diabetes and others don’t? — understanding more about genetic risk can help us stop judging others and ourselves. Biological response is set when we are born, but we can choose new environments and alternative activities.

Resources for changing behavior

Concerned about a friend or yourself? Email Dr. Jessi Brown jybrown@vcu.edu to connect with other students building skills to live clean and sober. Or email recovery@vcu.edu to get connected to Rams in Recovery and Smart Recovery. *For alcohol research, both at VCU and nationally, a “standard drink” is defined as 12 oz beer, 5 oz wine or 1.5 oz hard liquor.

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;IPP’W Data Source: The Well’s NCHA Spring 2014 NCHA data cross-sectional random campus data (n=1,104). Questions? email thewell@vcu.edu

Data Source: Spit for Science data (n= 3,639), includes only students who drank alcohol on at least 5 occasions, 2011-2013 cohorts, freshman spring follow-up survey. Questions? email spit4science@vcu.edu


THE STALL SEAT JOURNAL

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Vol MMXIV • October 2014

The Well: 804-828-WELL, www.thewell.vcu.edu, 815 S. Cathedral Place, Richmond VA 23284

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WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A MAN.

ince 1991, the White Ribbon Campaign has asked men and boys to join the fight to prevent violence against women and girls, and to promote gender equality, healthy relationships, and a new vision of masculinity. This masculinity includes letting go of harmful stereotypes that view men as naturally aggressive or, if they show emotion, weak. The campaign believes that men and boys are an integral part of the solution in promoting healthy relationships and ending violence. Here at VCU, Men Against Violence (MAV) in partnership

with SAVES (Students Advocating Violence Education and Support) promotes the idea that ending intimate partner violence, sexual assault, stalking, and other forms of abuse should be everyone’s goal. MAV believes that maleidentified folks can use their strength and position in society to make positive social

change that creates healthy ways communicate consent. relationships and ends victim • Be a good role model: blaming. Show those around you that SAVES encourages students respect is important. from all genders to work togeth- • Learn about the impact of er to foster a safer and healthier violence against women in VCU community. our communities. • Challenge and speak out What you can do: against hurtful language, • Be true to yourself: What sexist jokes, and bullying. kind of man do you want to • Understand that violence be? affects everyone. • Respect women, girls, and • Join MAV or SAVES at other guys. Sexism, hoVCU. mophobia, and transphobia Visit whiteribbon.ca for hurt us all. • Never use force, threats, or more information on the interviolence in your relationships national White Ribbon Campaign or for more information with others. on MAV go to The Well’s • Ask first. From holding hands to kissing, or more, al- website.

The White Ribbon Campaign: Changing the Definition HEALTHY E

LOVE

ver wondered how you can have healthier relationships with your partners, friends, lovers, and family? Then check out the Relationship Skills Class for LGBTQ Students! This is a six-week class on Fridays from 12:30 to 2 pm starting Oct 10, 2014. To register for the fall class or to sign up to receive more information about future classes, contact Kaylin Tingle at tinglekm@ vcu.edu or 804-828-7695.

“Engage the person, not the disability.”

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ur student organization uses this maxim to provoke thought about how we, as a culture, often see those with physical disabilities and make assumptions. In recognition of Disability Awareness Month in October, we encourage everyone reading this to imagine how you would want others to treat you. Would you rather be acknowledged as a peer, or as a person who is in need of help? Please use this month to pause before you engage another student with a disability. Chances are, you’ll realize that you have more in common than you think. The barriers that separate us from each other can be dissolved by small acts of empathy, not sympathy. — Submitted by Jenson Larrimore, president,

Students for Disability Advocacy and Awareness

Stall hop to read

For 24/7 confidential help with sexual, domestic, dating violence and stalking abuse, call the Richmond Regional Hotline.

Find out what VCU and the Richmond community are doing to improve access to healthy, affordable local food. Attend Food Day events. Oct 21–24 www.thewell.vcu.edu

and figure out your biological response to alcohol.


ALCOHOL 101 with a data dump

The Sober Reality

November 2014

in the night where a little voice in your head tells you that one more drink won’t make you feel better, just drunker, that might be your cue to switch to water and start thinking about getting home safely! Stop by The Well for a safety wallet so you can estimate your own BAC.

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angover remedies — cold showers, caffeine, “hair of the dog,” bananas, honey, fresh air, and such — may make a drunk person feel a little better. But the only thing that makes a drunk person sober -- that is, no longer impaired nor at risk for DUI -- is time. The human body processes alcohol at a steady rate. The liver knocks off about 0.015% from one’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) every hour. VCU research shows that 94% of students have not had alcohol adversely affect their academics. For the few who do party hard, the next-day recovery timeline might surprise you.

Here are two hypotheticals

1. Go to bed with just a buzz (BAC between .05 and .07) and seven or eight hours later you probably will be alert and ready to learn in your very first morning class. 2. Go to bed with a BAC of .150, and you will not be sober until 10 hours later. So not fun. So if you get to that point

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Want to know more?

Time

Activity

BAC

3 am

Stop drinking. Go to bed.

.150

4 am

Awake, woozy, unsettled.

.135

5 am

Finally asleep, tossing and turning.

.120

6 am

Wake up with a headache – still impaired.

.105

7 am

Drive to class – risk of DUI.

.090

8 am

First class – trouble concentrating.

.075

9 am

Breakfast @ Shafer – not hungry, cottonmouth.

.060

10 am

Next class – trouble focusing.

.045

11 am

Drive home. If under 21, still at risk for DUI.

.030

Noon

Head clearing.

.015

1 pm

Sober, but exhausted.

.000

Pathways to Choices is a new free online alcohol and drug education class available to all students. Register at thewell. vcu.edu. A shorter online Alcohol & Drug Self-Assessment is also available at thewell.vcu.edu. This anonymous assessment, available at no charge, will give you your peak and typical BAC, as well as how your drinking compares with other VCU students.

Strategies for a better buzz

Students who use alcohol have told us they have a variety of strategies for maximizing fun and minimizing the not-so-fun. Student strategies include pacing drinks, drinking non-alcoholic beverages out of red cups, spacing drinks with water or non-alcoholic beverages, counting drinks, eating before drinking, and avoiding drinking games and other competitive drinking.

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;IPP’W Data Source: Spit for Science Fall Freshmen (2011–2013 cohorts) n~5,400. Questions? email spit4science@vcu.edu

Data Source: The Well’s NCHA Spring 2014 NCHA data cross-sectional random campus data (n=1,081). Questions? email thewell@vcu.edu

Women

Men

The last time you “partied”/socialized, how many hours did you drink alcohol?

0

I sometimes limit my drinking or don’t drink at all because... 52.7% — It’s not healthy to drink too much.

............................................................................................. 0 hours, 92 (23%) .......................................................................................... 1-2 hours, 61 (15%) ........................................................................................ 3-4 hours, 138 (34%) .......................................................................................... 5-6 hours, 91 (23%) ............................................................................................ 7-8 hours, 17 (4%) ............................................................................................ 9-10 hours, 4 (1%)

38.1% — I don’t want to disappoint my parents.

........................................................................................... 0 hours, 162 (24%) ........................................................................................ 1-2 hours, 144 (21%) ........................................................................................ 3-4 hours, 225 (33%) ........................................................................................ 5-6 hours, 122 (18%) ............................................................................................ 7-8 hours, 20 (3%) ............................................................................................ 9-10 hours, 3 (0%)

22.4% — I was brought up not to drink.

50

100

150

200

250

23.5% — I’m afraid I might become an alcoholic. 13% — It makes me feel bad emotionally.

10.8% — I’m concerned about how much I’ve been drinking.

0 (Respondents 10 20 40 checked all 30 that applied.

50

60

Numbers represent % who said the reason was “very important.)


Hydration!

Easy as 1, 2, Zzz

real rams drink water

-written by Emily Kelly

Sometimes falling asleep seems to take forever. Studies show the average human body takes about seven minutes to fall asleep when tired. For busy students with a lot on their minds, it can take longer especially without sleep skills.

-written by Victor Bernal

With all of the beverage options available to us today, it is easy to forget that water is the most essential substance to life on Earth. Our bodies are made of mostly water, composing 60% of our body weight. Every process our body performs at the cellular level requires a ready supply of water to carry out the essential functions. Not feeling well? You may be dehydrated. The symptoms of dehydration are broad including: S Dry Mouth S Dizziness S Fatigue S Low Urine output S Confusion S Fainting S Inability to sweat S Palpitations (feeling that the heart is jumping or pounding) Chances are you aren’t drinking enough water! Drinking water at parties? If you like to drink alcohol at parties there is a good chance you are familiar with hangovers. Hangovers are a drag. Not only do they make you feel terrible, but they also interfere with any events or work planned for the next day. Drinking water before, during, and after your night’s adventures will help prevent hangovers and make tomorrow more fun and productive. Don’t forget to stall hop for the next Alcohol 101 with a data dump!

Stick to a schedule. Go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time every day; even on weekends! This is hard, but remember: “Bad today, Better Tomorrow”

Are you an athlete? Do you exercise? It’s always important to hydrate properly but even more so when exercising. Athletes who maintain proper hydration before, during, and after exercise sessions perform better than those who don’t. At dehydration of just 1-2% body weight, physiological function begins to be compromised, negatively influencing physical performance. The American Council on Fitness has suggested the following basic water intake guidelines for people doing moderate- to high-intensity exercise: S Drink 17 to 20 ounces of water 2 to 3 hours before you start exercising S Drink 8 ounces of water 20 to 30 minutes before you start exercising or during your warm-up S Drink 7 to 10 ounces of water every 10 to 20 minutes during exercise S Drink 8 ounces of water no more than 30 minutes after you exercise S Water is sufficient for most exercisers. Athletes who exercise intensely for longer than 60 min and are salty sweaters may benefit from a sports drink to replenish sodium lost from sweat.(NCAA Sport Science Institute). Always carry more water with you to practice or exercise session than you think you will need! S

If you can’t fall asleep after 20 minutes, get up and work on quiet, non-engaging activities like crossword puzzles, or knitting. Return to bed only when drowsy. Give yourself a bedtime ritual of at least 30 minutes before bed where your eyes aren’t glued to a bright eyeball-stimulating screen.

What is insomnia? Insomnia is the inability to fall asleep. It can be short termwhen stressed or on a new sleep schedule, or become chronic. One in three Americans has occasional run-ins with insomnia. The good news is googling Sleep Hygiene or “Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I)” can provide research based strategies for better sleep. If you’re having trouble sleeping, re-evaluate the good things and the not-so-good things about sleep disrupters such as caffeine, nicotine, alcohol and cannabis. The Well can help, email TheWell@vcu.edu. See the Happy Sleep Sheep below for some more helpful tips! The Well knows academic success is greater with sleep. Visit us and ask for FREE Ear Plugs- the allpurpose nap-better, sleep-better, hear-better, yellow foam friend. Use your bed only for sleep and sex. Other activities, especially worrying about not sleeping, can create a vicious cycle where the body learns to be anxious in bed.

Avoid being hungry or full at bedtime. Consider a light bedtime snack such as milk, dairy products, tuna, or turkey which contains tryptophan- a snooze producer.


For more information contact The Well www.thewell.vcu.edu, Division of Student Affairs

Mind full?

or

Mindful?

new course:

Mindfulness for Professional Healthcare Students IPEC 525- a 1 credit pass/ fail class offered Wed 3-5 pm in Spring 2015

STOP, BREATHE, BE.

show that when people took a few minutes each day to really savor simple things like - eating a meal, drinking a cup of coffee or walking across campus—those people experienced more happiness.

Mindfulness skills are some of the best ways to deal with stress, during finals and the rest of your life. Mindfulness, once grasped, is a life changing concept. It’s realizing that we are not our thoughts. We are the consciousness that can notice our thoughts. Our brains often feel like snow globes shaken with stress and bombarded by thoughts or overwhelming emotions. Simply choosing to - stop, breathe and be… can be the most important thing we ever do. Our brains settle and we can see clearly in the present moment.

What can you do right now to practice mindfulness?

“The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.” -Sydney J. Harris

Mindfulness is really a practice. Jon KabatZinn, a modern day stress researcher, defines mindfulness as “non-judgemental moment to moment awareness.” Most mindfulness practices use the breath to link the person to the awareness of the present moment because our current breath is always in the here and now. There are a variety of other ways to reduce stress by being present and aware. Studies

Start small. Pick a few strategies to try during finals. i Use a routine cue such as the start and/or the end of a class to – Stop, Breathe, Be. i While booting up your computer pay attention to your bodily sensations, consciously relax your shoulders, feel your body in the chair, and breathe. i Attend a Mind and Body Class at VCU’s Rec Sports such as yoga or Tai Chi. i Go for a walk or a run and just be- feel the breeze on your face, hear the birds and breathe. i Hurried health professional students can pause when washing hands between patients to feel the warm water, see the bubbles, breathe; thus being able to focus on the next patient. Stop, Breathe, and Be before you start a final exam. Good luck. Happy end of semester!

Rampantry exists to address food insecurity by providing VCU students in need with healthy, emergency food and personal hygiene products. Visit the www.rampantry.com to find out how to access food when the pantry is open and at alternate

times. Students must have a valid VCU ID and take a brief confidential survey. There is no limit to how often you can use Rampantry. This effort is sponsored by the Rampantry student organization. Questions? email vcurampantry@gmail.com

This course will provide healthcare professional students with an interprofessional curriculum in mindfulness practices, with a focus on clinical applications for healthcare providers. The course focuses on subjects ranging from research on the effects of stress, balancing life with clinical workload, reducing anxiety and depression through meditation and yoga, concepts of self-compassion and compassion for others. The first 30 minutes of the class presents the didactic material with a group discussion. Mindfulnessbased yoga and meditation practice makes up the remainder of the class time. You will leave feeling relaxed yet invigorated. Course Instructors: Patricia Kinser, PhD, WHNP-BC, RN, CYT who researches the impacts of mindfulness practice on health for various clinical populations George Deeb, DDS, MD who uses mindfulness to deal with operating room stress and for high altitude mountain climbing. Sarah Braun, BA, CYT, PhD a clinical psychology student will lead the mindfulness practice sessions. PREREQUISITES: Healthcare professional student in good standing (e.g. students in the schools of nursing, medicine, pharmacy, allied health and dentistry, including dental hygiene, as well as those in graduate social work and graduate psychology programs). Questions? email kinserpa@vcu.edu i


ALCOHOL 101 with a data dump

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Shedding some light on blackouts Published by the Wellness Resource Center, Division of Student Affairs, Winter 2014–2015

Pre-party: Blackout maker or breaker

Why this night and not another?

Students are puzzled sometimes about why they blacked out on a certain night when in the past they drank more and didn’t. Research suggests that the rapid rise in blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is a key factor. Gulping drinks on an empty stomach or drinking too much too fast is the recipe for having a blackout. The usual blackout blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is about 0.20. However, in some studies, people have blacked out with a BAC as low as 0.06 (yeah, that’s not a typo).

❣ ♥♥

Who blacks out?

@

The Spit for Science pie chart below shows that most students (58%) did not black out in the past year. However, students who do shots, play drinking games, and gulp drinks are the most at risk. Women are at risk if they try to drink at the same rate as men. Students who are part of groups with traditions of rapid drinking and drinking games are at risk. Blackouts also have a genetic component. If one identical twin has blackouts, the other is more likely to be prone to blackouts as well, due to common DNA variants that makes someone more susceptible. It’s a myth that you have to be an alcoholic to black out. While blackouts are more common in alcoholics, they also occur in rare or occasional drinkers. Some people

✤✤

&

SATURDAY

FRIDAY

THURSDAY

WEDNESDAY

TUESDAY

MONDAY

I

f you’ve seen the movie “The Hangover,” you know that alcohol-related blackouts are not pass outs. Drinkers remain up and moving but alcohol derails brain systems, resulting in shortterm memory never getting moved to long-term memory. There are two types of blackouts – complete (permanent memory loss of periods of hours or even days that never returns) and partial (short pieces of memory loss lasting minutes that sometimes may be recalled).

SUNDAY

Memories

who define themselves as alcoholics never have blacked out.

Can you stop blacking out?

Sure. Some folks have one blackout and then, confronted by the consequences, choose to alter their drinking and don’t black out again. Research shows that students who blacked out six times or more in the previous year are 2.5 times more likely to end up in the emergency room. Hospital bills, unplanned STIs/ pregnancy, and embarrassing Facebook posts don’t have to happen. If you or someone you know is experiencing repeated blackouts, patterns can be changed. Feel free to contact the Well or University Counseling Services for some supportive ideas so you can remember all the great times of your life.

P

re-parties have lots of good things going for them. You get to hang out with a smaller group of people whom you know better, which often is more fun, and the space is usually private so food and drinks are cheaper or free. Pre-parties provide a way to plan ahead for the rest of the night’s activities and designate safety groups and drivers as needed. Sometimes the pre-party is so much fun that you don’t move on to the party. Seniors tell us that the best pre-parties focus on fun with friends. If the focus is getting hammered, the evening is not only less fun but often forgotten. Seniors suggested avoiding the temptation to “catch up” if you get to the party late. And they advise either to totally avoid drinking games or, if you have to play, to alter what you do, such as using water, beer shots or half shots.

8LI

;IPP’W Data Source: The Well’s NCHA Spring 2014 cross-sectional random campus data (n=1,104). Questions? email thewell@vcu.edu College students reported doing the following most of the time or always when they “partied” or socialized during the last 12 months:

80% Eat before and/or during drinking. 70% Keep track of how many drinks being consumed. 89%

Stay with the same group of friends the entire time drinking.

52% Stick with only one kind of alcohol when drinking. 0

20

40

60

80

100

Data Source: Spit for Science, Spring Survey, Second year 20112012 cohorts (n=2,410). Questions? email spit4science@vcu.edu


For more information contact The Well www.thewell.vcu.edu, Division of Student Affairs

HAVE YOU

HERD?

Welcome to our first cartoon Stall Seat! This nerd herd knows the facts. VCU students are healthier than people think! The herd will feature health findings from a campus-wide random survey of all enrolled students freshmen through grad students.

Questions about the data? The data nerd herd would love to talk about the survey methods. Just email TheWell@vcu.edu or call 804-828WELL. Check out more facts on The Well’s facebook and instagram. Want to suggest some more “VCU puns”? Send those along too!

82% of VCU students use at least one protective behavior when they socialize, such as avoiding drinking games, alternating with non-alcoholic beverages, pace and space drinks, setting a limit in advance, and choosing not to drink. They protect themselves and their friends by partying smart! Most Rams “hoof” the good sense to avoid drinking games!

Most Rams ask a pal to “butt in” when they’ve had too much!

Most Rams follow their guts and make sure to eat and stay hydrated when at parties!

Most Rams are aware of the ramifications for drunk driving and always make sure to get home safe!

Chance to win Xbox One! Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Violence and Bystander Intervention

RamPantry has a new home! Room 121 MPC Student Commons. Rampantry exists to address food insecurity by providing VCU students in need with healthy, emergency food and personal hygiene products. Visit rampantry.com for details about use/times.

Check your VCU e-mail on February 1 to see if you were randomly selected to take the anonymous survey. We know you are busy and this is heavy stuff... but we need all voices! Those directly impacted by violence and all others are encouraged to respond to give

an accurate scope of campus safety. You could win one of over 50 prizes, including an Xbox One, $50 Amazon gift cards, and VCU t-shirts! Contact ahconley@vcu.edu for more information. For resources, go to: http://www.titleix.saf. vcu.edu

Weekly Mental Wellness Skills Opportunities 1. Growth & Opportunities through Life Demands (GOLD)- drop-in sessions every Wed at noon in Rm 238 MPC Commons hosted by University Counseling Services (see UCS homepage for list of topics by date) 2. Mindfulness Practice- drop-in sessions every Thurs at 4 pm at The Well 3. LGBTQIA Rainbow Support Groupevery Fri at 3 pm (requires registration jhaltman@vcu.edu) 4. Sexual Abuse/Assault Survivor 12 week Group- every Tues 10-11:30, sign up before 1/27/15- email katie@safeharborshelter.com


For more information contact The Well www.thewell.vcu.edu, Division of Student Affairs

HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS All relationships exist on a spectrum, ranging from abusive to healthy.

My Masculinity Helps film featuring Dr. Marc Grimmett View and discuss a documentary engaging boys and men, along with women, in the deconstruction of gender roles, masculinity, and power in the prevention of sexual violence. Feb. 10, 2015 University Student Commons’ Commonwealth Ballroom B 7­-9 pm

Your Voice Counts!

Participate in the Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Violence and Bystander Intervention Be part of making campus Contact ahconsafer. Randolmly selected ley@vcu.edu for students received an e-mail to more information. their VCU accounts. A select For resources, go few will receive one of over to: http://www.titleix. 50 prizes, including an Xbox saf.vcu.edu One, $50 Amazon gift cards, and VCU t-shirts!

Maintaining healthy relationships is important for your overall health and wellness. Any relationships between friends, family or significant others should leave you feeling safe. However, we are not born knowing how to have healthy relationships, and many of us were never taught. So, how do we know if a relationship is healthy?

Communication Conflict and disagreements are inevitable in relationships. The ability to talk about how you are feeling and speak up when you feel uncomfortable is necessary. Talking problems out with one another can

BOUNDARIES Within any relationship we can choose to make compromises, but some limits are non-negotiable. Understanding your own boundaries, as well as the boundaries of others, is necessary for healthy relationships. These

Monday Feb. 16 at 7pm in the Siegel Center

HERD?

boundaries are different in the context of different relationships. Consider creating a “Yes/ No/Maybe” list with a partner, roommate, or friend to help start a conversation about what is acceptable and what is non-negotiable in your relationship – you can Google a pre-existing one or create your own.

EQUALITY

ships can lead to power and control, a recipe for abuse. Red flags to look Each person should feel as out for include extreme jealousy, if they are both giving coercion, and isolation. No one is “in and receiving equally charge” in a healthy relationship – within the relationFree oral HIV testing: Feb. 18 11am-3pm each person contributes to decisions in the Student Commons. Sponsored by Raise5Project, ship. Unequal about the relationship and has conFan Free Clinic and The Well relationtrol over their own choices.

Celebrated coach and athlete Joe Ehrmann will present “Educating Through Sport: Enriching Lives, Improving Performance, Transforming Relationships.” Free event sponsored by the Center for Sport Leadership at VCU. For more info contact sportscenter@vcu.edu

HAVE YOU

help to adjust the relationship to the needs of each individual and help the relationship grow stronger. Try using “I” statements when you are communicating, particularly during a disagreement. (Ex: “I feel ________ [feeling] when ________ [name specific behavior]. I would like _________ [suggest what you would like in the future].”)

Even the horniest Rams are wary of condom slackers!

Follow up with Spit for Science!

Get 12 condoms for $4 at Student Health!

Spit for Science (www.spit4science.vcu.edu) is a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. Past participants: Earn another $10 by completing a follow-up survey! Freshmen 18+: If you didn’t participate last Fall, you

If you think your relationship is unhealthy or you are unsure, visit www.loveisrespect.org and take the Healthy Relationships Quiz or stop by The Well to speak with an advocate. ♥

can now! Complete the new SHORTER survey emailed to your VCU account for $10. Provide DNA (saliva) sample for another $10. Payment/New T-shirt Pickup: Franklin Street Gym, B43, M-F, Feb. 23- Mar. 6, 11:30AM-4:30PM


For more information contact The Well www.thewell.vcu.edu, Division of Student Affairs

Loss, Resilience, and Moving Forward in College written by Rachel Weiskittle, BS and Sandy Gramling, Ph.D.

Are you sitting down? Let’s have a chat about a topic no one likes to talk about: grief. After someone we love dies, it can sometimes feel nearly impossible to discuss our loss with friends, coworkers, or even family members. College life can feel like a very lonely place when struggling with loss. However, a large number of students on campus are grieving the death of a loved one.

friend who is grieving. In addition to serving as a peer-led support group, AMF provides education to students and faculty about grief through monthly panel discussions. Learn more about VCU’s AMF chapter on their Facebook page, or come to an AMF meeting on March 26th at 6pm in Trani Life Sciences room 0250. For info, contact us at AMFVCU@ gmail.com

As many as 40% of college students have experienced the death of a family member or close friend within the last two years. Grieving students at VCU have reported decreased academic performance, feelings of loneliness, and a high reliance on alcohol and drugs to cope. Research shows that students who receive adequate support during their grief have lower levels of anxiety, depression, physical ailments, and drug use. Need some support? VCU has a new group on campus that aims to combat the feelings of isolation grief can bring: Actively Moving Forward (AMF). This peerled organization aims to support bereaved students and perform community service in remembrance of individuals who have passed away. Any student can participate in this group, and it could be a terrific way to support a

Fear 2 Freedom (F2F) is a global non-profit dedicated to redeem and restore the lives of those wounded by sexual assault, bringing them hope and healing. F2F will partner with VCU on March 24 at 6pm in Larrick Ballroom, to provide after-care kits to those affected by rape, child abuse, domestic violence, and sex-trafficking. For more info, visit fear2freedom.org.

Need a laugh? All are invited to see recovery comedian Jay Armstrong Friday, March 27 at 7pm in Harris Hall Auditorium. Spread the word about the second annual VA Collegiate Recovery Conference March 27-28. Email recovery@vcu.edu for info.

You can still Spit for Science! Spit for Science is a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. The Spit for Science project will be moving from the Franklin Street Gym location to the University Student Commons Kiosk on March 16. Do your online survey, then pick up payments and newly designed t-shirts at: The University Student Commons Kiosk, 907 Floyd Avenue, Monday through Friday between 12:304:30PM. If you haven’t participated in the DNA component before but would like to, you will have the opportunity when you pick up your survey payment -- and you will receive an additional $10. Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu


MARIJUANA 101 with a data dump

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

815 S. Cathedral Place Richmond VA 23284

804-828-WELL

www.thewell.vcu.edu

By Dr. Tricia Smith

You know what the media says.

Here’s what the research says.

VCU biology professor and drugs of abuse researcher

I

t’s no secret that marijuana is an illegal (for now) drug that is less toxic than some other recreational drugs such as alcohol, heroin, and cocaine. In fact, new medicinal uses for marijuana (aka cannabis) and its extracts are being explored every day, including treatments for cancer, pain, nausea, inflammatory diseases — you name it!

But is marijuana risk-free?

Let’s examine the consequences of long-term administration of any drug: addiction and withdrawal. First, withdrawal, because where there is withdrawal, there is addiction. Marijuana withdrawal is not as explosive as withdrawal from other drugs, say morphine or alcohol, which can cause vomiting and convulsions, but it has still been recorded clearly and carefully in rodents, monkeys and humans. Mice administered high doses of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a psychologically

active component of marijuana, twice a day for a week experience sleep disturbances and “wet dog shakes,” thought to be a sign of restlessness and unease. Humans report a wide range of unpleasant symptoms, including anger, sleeplessness, weight loss, gastrointestinal disturbance, anxiety and drug craving. In one study, long-term current users and infrequent marijuana users played a frustrating computer game; daily smokers made significantly more aggressive responses than infrequent users in each session. About 9% of marijuana users become addicted. How would you know if you are one of the 9%? The best indication would be to

ask yourself, “Would my life be different without marijuana? “Would I have hobbies that did not include marijuana? Would I have more friends who don’t smoke? “Would I have a better job? Would I not plan my life around getting stoned? Would I not be anxious when my stash is low? Would I be able to keep promises to smoke less?” If you realize that your life would be better with less cannabis in it, contact kkdonovan@ vcu.edu at The Well.

What about synthetic “marijuana”?

Synthetic versions of marijuana have been available legally at head shops and gas stations from time-to-time in the United States. If marijuana is becoming legalized in some states, logic might suggest that a synthetic version of the same drug sold in stores must be safe, right? Unfortunately, they are not safe. THC binds to the cannabinoid receptor and turns it “on,” causing effects in the user’s neurons.

THC — and other compounds from marijuana — do a poor job of activating the receptor, switching it to about 30% of its potential “volume,” like turning on a radio, but very softly. Synthetic cannabinoids created in the laboratory can turn on the cannabinoid receptor 100%, like a full-tilt death metal concert, and the effects are not good. Synthetic cannabinoids have resulted in hospitalizations for panic attacks, vomiting, convulsions, heart attacks and hallucinations, and they have been documented to cause psychosis that does NOT go away when the drug wears off. Synthetic cannabinoids are dangerous compounds.

References available on request.

8LI ;IPP’W

Percent of VCU students who never have used marijuana: 59.0%

55.3% 53.6% 51.0%

The Well’s ACHA NCHA 2014 data Cross sectional study random sample n=1,104 Freshmen through grad students

Do you “get” the cartoon above? If not, you may be one of the students in the bar graph at right —>

Spit4Science incoming freshmen data 70% response rate from 3 cohorts 2011–2013 n=7,323

More than 50% of VCU students never have tried marijuana? Wow. Some students are skeptical when they learn this data. But both The Well’s study and S4S results mirror national findings.Food for thought: High non-use rates (pun intended) may reflect who gets into college and who remains in college.


VCU’s Annual Take Back the Night event Featuring live performances,

If someone stole your phone as you

survivor speak out, and free food.

walked through campus, would a friend say “Why were you carrying your phone?” or “Why were you walking on campus?” “Were you drinking when it happened?” or worse... “It’s probably all that bling on your phone, you were just asking for it to get stolen.” Would you feel ashamed, or afraid to report it to the police out of fear that they would not believe you?

April 17 6-9pm Student Commons

This month, VCU will become part of a nationwide effort to shift our culture to one that believes survivors of sexual assault. When we “Start by Believing,” survivors are more likely to seek help and less likely to suffer from shame, self doubt and other mental health concerns. If someone has the courage to tell you their story, will you believe them?

Brown Bag Series at the YWCA of Richmond Free! RSVP at ywcarva.eventbrite.com

Relay for Life April 18, 2015 Cary Street Field 11:00am- 9:00pm

Deja Johnson johnsonda5@vcu.edu Register at relayforlife.org/vcuva

There’s still time to follow-up with

Spit for Science!

It’s On US VCU Athletics It’s On Us is a national program created by the White House to encourage personal commitment to help keep women and men safe from sexual assault on college and university campuses. Take the pledge and “promise not to be a bystander to the problem, but to be a part of the solution.” VCU’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) is planning an It’s On Us awareness/pledge day on the Compass in April in conjunction with Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

Spit for Science is a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. We want to make participation very convenient, so the research team is coming to you! Do your online survey, then pick up payments and newly designed t-shirts at: Rhoads/Brandt: April 14, 2015, 6-8pm West Grace North: April 15, 2015, 6-8pm Or through the end of data collection at: University Commons Kiosk, Monday through Friday between 12:30-4:30PM Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu


VAPING 101 with a data dump

Q U   G I-C ES

If holder is damaged or loose, please call The Well at 828-9355.

Published by the Wellness Resource Center, Division of Student Affairs 804-828-WELL, www.thewell.vcu.edu

E

TIONS . . . . . .

Will e-cigs help smokers quit and reduce harm? Or will smokers yo-yo between cigarettes and e-cigs and delay quitting?

What’s in the vapor?

While vapor doesn’t have carbon monoxide or tar, it certainly isn’t “just water.” A review of 29 articles found contents

vary within and between products. Contents often do not match the label. The main propellants that make vapor are propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerin (VG). Other chemicals found in the vapor include various flavorings, nicotine, aldehydes, metals, volatile organic compounds and tobacco-specific nitrosamines. As voltage increases, toxins increase. Aerosol generated from a leading e-cigarette manufacturer contained nanoparticles including metals (copper, silver, nickel) and silicate particles (from fiberglass wicks).

WAIT & SEE

What about the nicotine?

There is no standard quality control. Products are labeled in

FYI

milligrams, percentages or using descriptors (eg, low, medium, high). Research in 2014 shows little correspondence between descriptors and milligrams or percentage of nicotine across brands. If swallowed, nicotine liquid can be lethal in adults, but children are most at risk.

Is vaping safe?

No one knows. The final say on the safety of vaping is still up in the air along with the health of users as they exhale several types of chemicals into the atmosphere with each pull. One thing is clear however: there is a risk of nicotine addiction. Recent data confirm that some e-cigs are capable of delivering nicotine doses as high as a cigarette (the most addictive tobacco product marketed to date).

During the  last  30  days,  on  how  many  days   did  you  use  e-­‐cigare>es?   100% 1   90% 0.9   80% 0.8   70% 0.7   60% 0.6   50% 0.5   40% 0.4   30% 0.3   20% 0.2   10% 0.1   0  0

% of  S4S  par*cipants  

VCU’s Smokefree Workplace Policy: All university buildings are designated “no smoking,” which includes the use of oral electronic devices that produce vapor containing nicotine and/or other substances.” The 25-foot rule from doors and windows applies.

What effect will years of daily e-puffing on vapors containing flavoring, chemicals, nicotine and ultrafine particles have on the user — and on the environment?

You can bet all those new vape shops are counting on repeat customers. Currently there are no federal regulations on the manufacture, use, or sale of e-cigs although the Food and Drug Administration is in the process of passing policies related to these products. Some suggest that e-cig advertising attempts to re-normalize smoking behavior through the use of e-cigs. More recently, traditional tobacco companies (e.g., Philip Morris) have begun to market their own e-cig brands in what may be an attempt to maintain incoming revenue from dropping cigarette sales.

.. . . .

E

lectronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigs, vape pens or e-hookahs, come in more than 460 brands with various shapes, sizes and more than 7,700 flavors. In general, e-cigs are defined by the use of a battery and heating element to deliver an aerosol to the user, containing products including nicotine, flavorings, and other chemicals. Although available in the United States only since 2007, there are already at least three generations of e-cigs. Health risks will vary based on a legion of factors such as e-cig brand, generation of e-cig, voltage, wick materials, contents of the heated liquid, and the amount of use or exposure.

Will some people who otherwise never would have smoked cigarettes start with e-cigs and become addicted?

Not used   Once  a  week  or  less   More  than  once  a  week  

Freshmen                 (2013  cohort)  

Sophomores           (2012  cohort)  

Juniors                                   (2011  cohort)  

Among all S4S participants who took surveys in Spring 2014. Freshmen (n=1714). Sophomores (n=1198). Juniors (n=975).

If you want to quit tobacco or e-cigs....

Well researched help exists. There are also FDA-approved medications including two prescription cessation pills (Chantix and Bupropion) and five nicotine replacement products. Email quit@vcu.edu for info and support.

E-cig development since 2007

First generation: Called “cigalikes” because they often look like a cigarette. They are usually disposable but may have a rechargeable lower voltage battery and replaceable cartridge. Second generation: Called “eGos,” often larger and don’t look like a cigarette. They utilize cartomizers or tanks to be refilled with e-cig liquid and batteries with higher capacity. Third generation: Called “Mods” because they include mechanical modifications and variable voltage devices. Mods are designed with a re-buildable at omizer and allow users to choose “wicking material” and handmade metal coils.


FORGIFTNESS

The Gift You Give Yourself Do you have things to forgive? • Roommate problems • Romantic relationships • Teacher-student disputes

Does forgiveness matter? Effects of not forgiving are bad feelings that can poison friendships, romantic relationships, and spiritual connectedness, including: • Anger • Depression • Anxiety • Bitterness • Resentment

Holding on to negative feelings can affect your physical well-being over time. Effects include: • Increased risk for stroke, high blood pressure and heart attack (around age 50) • Decreased immune system functioning • Increased cortisol (interferes with sexual function, digestion, brainpower, etc.)

• Family relationships • Friendships that disappoint • Disappointing oneself

Forgiveness can help restore positive feelings in a valued relationship. It comes in two forms: •Decisional: Choosing to forgive. •Emotional: Replacing negative feelings with positive or neutral ones.

Forgiving Yourself When forgiving yourself, we typically deal with guilt and/or shame. • You may want to try to repair the damage you feel you’ve done. • You may need to make amends, or share your difficult lessons to help others. • You may need to confront your perfectionistic expectations.

Accept yourself as an imperfect person while

simultaneously committing to not fail in the same way again.

REACH

Method of Forgiveness What if you don’t want to forgive? Not everyone wants to forgive and that’s okay. You still have options to help cope. While these options may help lead you closer to forgiveness, they may just take a person from negative to neutral. • Seeing justice done can diminish the drive to hold on to negative feelings. • Accept that things happen and move on with your life. • “Fake it ‘til you make it”, or keep from responding in anger for the sake of others.

Effective in more than 20 clinical trials.

Recall

Remember the hurt that was done to you as objectively as you can.

Empathize

Try to understand the viewpoint of the person who wronged you.

Altruism

Think about a time you hurt someone and were forgiven, then offer the gift of forgiveness to the person who hurt you.

Commit

Publicly forgive the person who wronged you.

Hold on

Don’t forget the hurt, but remind yourself that you made the choice to forgive. Developed by VCU Professor Dr. Everett Worthington.

Need to talk to someone? University Counseling Services provides mental health services. See their website for hours and location. Walk in to schedule an appointment. After Hours Emergency? Call VCU Police dispatcher (804) 828-1234 and ask to speak to a therapist. If you found this helpful, you can also access a do-it-yourself workbook at www.EvWorthington-forgiveness.com.

Stall Hop to see the same content but different designs!

This version is designed by: Lauren Rakes, Julia Moore, Ameorry Luo, and Emily Rueckert in the class COAR 341 Scientific Illustration.


For more information contact The Well www.thewell.vcu.edu, Division of Student Affairs

Forgiveness Forms of forgiveness

Forgiveness can help restore positive feelings in a valued relationship and it comes in two forms: 1. Decisional: Choosing to forgive. 2. Emotional: Replacing negative feelings with either positive or neutral ones.

Do you have things to forgive?

R is for “recall”

Roommate problems Romantic relationships Teacher-student disputes Friendships that disappoint Family relationships Maybe even oneself

Remembering the hurt that was done to you as objectively as you can.

Effects of not forgiving are:

• Anger • Depression • Anxiety • Bitterness • Resentment • Bad feelings that can poison friendships, romantic relationships, and spiritual connectedness. Holding on to negative feelings can affect your physical well being over time: • Increased risk for stroke, high blood pressure, and heart attack at about age 50 • Decreased immune system functioning • Increased cortisol (which can interfere with sexual function, digestion, brainpower, etc.)

Forgive yourself

How can people forgive?

E is for “empathize”

Does forgiveness matter?

REACH Forgiveness of the Other Person and Yourself* Developed by VCU Professor Dr. Everett Worthington. www.EvWorthington-forgiveness.com

Trying to understand the viewpoint of the person who wronged you.

When forgiving yourself, one deals with guilt or shame. 1. You may want to try to repair the damage you feel you’ve done. 2. You may need to make amends, or share your difficult lessons to help others. 3. You may need to confront your own perfectionistic expectations. Accept yourself as an imperfect person while simultaneously committing to not fail in the same way again.

What if you don’t want to forgive someone else or yourself?

Not everyone wants to forgive and that’s okay. You still have options: • Seeing justice done can diminish the drive to hold on to negative feelings. • Accept the things that happen and move on with your life. • “Fake it ‘till you make it”, or keep from responding in anger for the sake of others.

A is for “altruism”

Thinking about a time you hurt someone and were forgiven, then offering the gift of forgiveness to the person who hurt you.

While these options help lead you closer to forgiveness, they may just take a person from negative to neutral.

C is for “commit”

Publicly forgiving the person who wronged you.

Designed and Illustrated by: Annie Lacour, Kelly Passmore, Lamont Sandridge, Latasha Dunston, and Caroline Bivens COAR 341 Scientific Illustration Stall Hop to see a different design!

University Counseling Services provides mental health services. See their website for hours and location. Walk in to schedule an appointment. After Hours Emergency? Call VCU Police dispatcher (804) 828-1234 and ask to speak to a therapist.

H is for “hold on” Not forgetting the hurt, but reminding yourself that you made the choice to forgive.

*REACH effective in more than 20 randomized clinical trials.


REACHing out to Forgive University Counseling Services provides mental health services. See their website for hours and location. Walk in to schedule an appointment. After Hours Emergency? Call VCU Police dispatcher (804) 828-1234 and ask to speak to a therapist.

R

is for “recall”—remembering the hurt that was done to you as objectively as you can.

E

is for “empathize”—trying to understand the viewpoint of the person who wronged you.

A

is for “altruism”—thinking about a time you hurt someone and were forgiven, then offering the gift of forgiveness to the person who hurt you.

C

is for “commit”—publicly forgiving the person who wronged you

H

is for “hold on”—not forgetting the hurt, but reminding yourself that you made the choice to forgive.

Developed by VCU professor Dr. Everett Worthington

DO YOU HAVE THINGS TO FORGIVE? •roommate problems •romantic relationships •teacher-student disputes •friendships that disappoint •family relationships •(maybe even) disappointing oneself DOES FORGIVENESS MATTER? Effects of not forgiving are bad feelings that can poison friendships, romantic relationships, and spiritual connectedness: •anger •depression •anxiety •bitterness •resentment

HOLDING ON TO NEGATIVE FEELINGS CAN AFFECT YOUR PHYSICAL WELL-BEING OVER TIME: •Increased risk for stroke, high blood pressure and heart attack (~ age 50) •Decreased immune system functioning •Increased cortisol (which can interfere with sexual function, digestion, brainpower, etc.) FORGIVENESS CAN HELP RESTORE POSITIVE FEELINGS IN A VALUED RELATIONSHIP, AND IT COMES IN TWO FORMS: •Decisional: Choosing to forgive. •Emotional: Replacing negative feelings with either positive or neutral ones.

FORGIVING YOURSELF When forgiving yourself, we typically deal with guilt and/or shame. • You may want to try to repair the damage you feel you’ve done. • You may need to make amends, or share your difficult lessons to help others. • You may need to confront your own perfectionistic expectations. Accept yourself as an imperfect person while simultaneously committing to not fail in the same way again. WHAT IF YOU DON’T WANT TO FORGIVE Not everyone wants to forgive and that’s okay. You still have options to help you cope. While these options may help lead you closer to forgiveness, they may just take a person from negative to neutral. •Seeing justice done can diminsh the drive to hold on to negative feelings. •Accept that things happen and move on with your life. •“Fake it ‘til you make it”, or keep from responding in anger for the sake of others. Stall Hop to similar copy but different design! This version designed by: Hannah Huddle, Sarah Morley, Liesl Tahmassebi, & Ilana Bean in COAR 341 Scientific Illustration


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Only total abstinence works 100% of the time.....

BIRTH CONTROL    101 P

But other methods are pretty darn effective.

regnancy is a life changdon’t have to get a Pap smear to get a prescriper, for sure. Here are tion. All you need to get answers to questions pills is a chat with a medimany college women have cal provider and a blood about preventing it. If you pressure check. want to know more, please • Birth control shot (Depoask at The Well or Student Provera), lasts for three Health! We want our students months. to have the power to plan their • NuvaRing. sexual actions to match their values and goals. How safe are birth control

Frequently Asked Questions

pills? And how do they benefit female students?

Whether you are at risk for a pregnancy or not, there are What can a student get health benefits to using birth by just walking in to the control pills. First, pills are clinic? medically safer than pregnan • Condoms, six for $1. (Yes, cy. Second, the most common we have VCU colors, black side effects of hormones are and gold, and Trojan Magbeneficial to women’s health nums.) • Plan B, $??. (You also can — PMS gets better, cramps go away, cycles get regular, get it from local pharmacies for $??.) Plan B is and acne clears up. However, most effective if taken as sometimes hormonal birth soon as possible after un- control makes those things protected sex, but it works worse. for up to five days. • Lubricant, ?? cents/pack. (If you are slippery, conIf you or someone you doms are less likely to know has been the victim break and sex feels better.) of sexual assault, you are • CycleBeads, $??. Check not alone. Visit the Sexual out cyclebeads.com for info on your fertility. Assault and Domestic Violence Services Coordinator What can a student get by at The Well to learn about going to a 15-minute clinic your options and find the appointment? (Call 828help you need. VCU Coun8828.) seling Services also of • Birth control pills, $??/ fers counseling to all VCU month. Don’t worry, you students. All services are FREE.

The bottom line is that pills are like shoes. Most fit! The best way to know is to try them and see if they fit your body. If you don’t like the first one you try, come back to the clinic and let’s change it.

Will I gain weight?

Weight gain is a real but RARE side effect of birth control pills, happening to fewer than 5% of users. On the other hand, weight gain is a very common side effect of pregnancy.

Will birth control now make it hard to have a baby later?

Nope, just the opposite. Hormones chill out your reproductive organs until you are ready to get pregnant, and they reduce things like ovarian cysts and endometriosis that can damage your female anatomy.

Will anyone find out if I start using birth control?

No one — not your parents, not your adviser, not your BFF — can get your medical records unless you give written permission. VCU takes your privacy very seriously. In fact, a VCU employee who breaks patient confidentiality is fired — period.

Reality and Sex

A

s a new college student, new relationships are an exciting part of campus life. You have the choice! Who to hang out with. Who to date. Whether to date. How far to go—or not. Be sure to make your decisions about relationships based on what is important to you — and not based on cultural myths. Campus-wide research at VCU (n=1,104) shows that most undergraduate students (74%) have 0–1 sex partners per year. Sex is complicated for women. Informal “clicker” polls of VCU women show that only 0–5% report having an orgasm the first time they have vaginal sex. If you choose abstinence, realize that plenty of other VCU students also have made that choice and for good reasons. Humans are diverse — only you know what is right for you.

Got time to kill? Fill out your survey Collect your cash www.spit4science.vcu.edu


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The down low on down below.

BIRTH CONTROL 101 A quick guide to what you need to know.

The Pill: Baby proof? Not exactly. Female contraceptives have low pregnancy rates, but they are only as good as the user. It is a guessing game for guys when it comes to female contraception. You never can be sure if your partner is really on The Pill, nor if she is using it correctly. The reality is that women are human, and they can forget their pills. Unfortunately, birth control pills are less effective if one is missed or even late by as little as two hours. If this happens, backup such as a condom should be used for at least the next seven days. If your special lady says, “Don’t worry about a condom,

baby, I’m on the pill,” a good answer is:“Pills are good, but they aren’t perfect. Let’s protect us both from pregnancy.”

Condoms need to be fresh. You prepare in every way for a perfect date, from your clothes to cologne. So it makes perfect sense to have condoms that are just as fresh as you are. If you’ve had the package for awhile, be sure to check the expiration date. Check for the pocket of air in the middle of the wrapper; if it’s flat when you pinch it, ditch it. To best protect your stash, avoid storing condoms in the heat/sun (like your car) and avoid wear-andtear places such as your wallet. (Buy six for $1 at Student Health! Magnums are 6 for $1 too!)

If the 'shoe' fits snugly, wear it.

Got time to kill? Fill out your survey Collect your cash

What to do when all else fails. Talk to your partner about Plan B (morning after pill). It is 80% effective pregnancy prevention, after other contraceptives have failed. It’s $25 at Student Health and at other pharmacies for $50. It’s best to take Plan B very soon, but it will work up to five days after unprotected sex.

Pillow Talk

STI Testing Resources

Student Health – By appointment, 828-8828 ($15 for Chlamydia / Gonorrhea, $15 for HIV/ syphilis). Richmond City Health Department, 400 E Cary St – Free but only available to the first 30 in line. Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 7:30 am–10:30 am and noon–3 pm.

Condoms should fit like a second skin. This prevents slippage and increases sensation. When buying condoms, remember there are size variations in both brands and styles. For example, Lifestyles tend to be a tighter fit than Trojans. It doesn’t hurt to buy lube, too, even if the condoms are lubricated. Adding lubrication greatly reduces the chance of rips, which are the leading causes of failed condom use.

Although you may enjoy having sex more than talking about it, conversation is well worth your time. Talk to her about anything and everything. Talk can prevent some big issues from arising — plus you will earn brownie points with your partner for caring about her body. You don’t have to start the conversation, just be open to talking and listening when “female” topics come up. Be open to discuss: What you gain: Her period

If your partner isn’t on the pill, knowing when her period starts helps you avoid her 12 most fertile days. See www.cyclebeads.com for details.

The Pill

Pills give better protection if two people try to remember correctly.

Condom preference

Everyone has a favorite. Different shapes and ribs can heighten pleasure while still giving you protection.

www.spit4science.vcu.edu

Reality and Sex

A

s a new college student, new relationships are an exciting part of campus life. You have the choice! Who to hang out with. Who to date. Whether to date. How far to go—or not. Be sure to make your decisions about relationships based on what is important to you — and not based on cultural myths. Campus-wide research at VCU (n=1,104) shows that most undergraduate students (74%) have 0–1 sex partners per year. If you choose abstinence, realize that plenty of other VCU students also have made that choice and for good reasons. Humans are diverse — only you know what is right for you.


Created and posted by students and staff from the VCU Wellness Resource Center

MENTAL HEALTH HELP AT VCU Research shows that VCU students believe seeking mental health services when needed is a sign of personal strength. College and transitions are challenging, but VCU has great resource to help. University Counseling Services are FREE to students. They have individual, group and couples counseling. Getting started is as simple as showing up in person to one of the two locations (MPC second floor of the commons, MCV- Grant House Room B011 1008 East Clay Stree) check website for hours. Just talk to the receptionist and fill out some online information. Bring your schedule to be able to schedule an initial consultation appointment. Therapy is typically short term – 12 sessions or less. If you’d rather have long term counseling or see a counselor off campus, they have a case manager who can help you find a local therapist based on your needs and insurance status. Online self-help is available! Check out the UCS website for a variety of issues. You can also find inks to places like www.ulifeline.org an online anonymous resource that has a self-evaluation tool for college students and a 24 hour hotline (Call 1 800-273 TALK). Crisis Help- Day or Night at VCU If you have an urgent mental health concern, VCU has help available. During the week, a crisis counselor is available for walk-ins if needed. After hours or on weekends, call the VCU police dispatcher at 828-1234 and ask them to have the oncall counselor call you back.

a.n.t.S AUTOMATIC NEGATIVE THOUGHTS

Negative Self Labeling Seeing only your flaws.

ANTs (Automatic Negative

Thoughts) happen to everyone. They are just random

Mind Reading

electrochemical impulses but they can greatly affect our happiness. It’s important to remember they are NOT accurate. Recognizing ANTs when they occur and learning skills to alter them by thinking more accurately can reduce stress and create positive mental energy.

Assuming other people have negative opinions about you with little or no proof.

STEP ONE: RECORD

When something upsetting happens, record your thoughts.

STEP TWO: RECOGNIZE

Labeling Others Assigning reductionist descriptions to others.

Recognize the species of ANT. Some examples are on the right. And then ask yourself, “Is this thought true? Helpful? Important?”

STEP THREE: REPLACE Replace the irrational ANT with more rational thinking. This will take practice! In the long run, learning to deal with ANTs can change your life. How we think about things determines how we feel.

Have you found your people? It’s normal to feel out of place when you start college. Check out “myORGS@vcu.edu” There are almost 500 student groups something for everyone! How to raise a parent Teaching your ‘rents that you can take care of yourself and have a life can be difficult. For how-to suggestions see utdallas.edu/counseling/raisingparents.

All or Nothing Thoughts in absolutes: “They ALWAYS ignore me!” “I’m the only one who doesn’t get drunk!”

Catastrophizing Minor negative events feel like the end of the world.


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SEPTEMBER S M

OCTOBER

T W Th F S

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DECEMBER

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Plan for fun: WEEKENDS

O

nce you start classes, homework and extracurriculars can get overwhelming. It’s important to remember that the weekend is YOUR time to decompress. To maximize weekend fun, check out the list of “175 Things To Do Before You Graduate.” There is no shortage of adventure around Richmond — go to First Friday Art Walks, join the Zombie Walk, ride the 2BNB bus (a fun and free shuttle bus), stroll the canal walk, boulder hop on Belle Isle, or explore an Outdoor Adventure Program like paddleboarding or Manchester wall climbing. For some students, weekends might include alcohol — for others not. Most students (78%) either don’t drink or keep their BAC below .08. To plan a fun weekend that provides happy memories, upperclassmen have provided this six-question pre-party checklist:

1

“What did I eat today?”

Make sure you load up on food before you go out — a meal like pizza or subs with protein, fats and carbs is ideal. Food slows the alcohol absorption rate, which translates into a better buzz, avoiding hangovers, and less chance of alcohol unexpectedly hitting

you all at once. Food helps prevent pass outs and blackouts, reducing the risk of legal charges and photo ops for the FacebookHall-of-Shame.

2

“What’s my limit?”

Pace -- it’s not a race. The first few times you go out, take it slow so that you really can answer this question. Remember, every night isn’t the same! When you’re tired or in a new situation, your limit may be much lower.

3

“What am I drinking?”

Different types of alcohol affect the body differently, usually based on how you are consuming them. Test this slowly over time. Sipping on a beer will allow you to pace yourself. Shots often cause loss of control and, sad to say,

doing shots isn’t as much fun as it looks in the movies. Shots often abruptly end an evening.

If you’re going to mix, try not to drink beer before liquor. The carbonation of the drink will let the alcohol get into your bloodstream at a much more rapid rate (same goes for mixing liquor with carbonated sodas!). Energy drinks might seem like a good idea, but they tend to make “wide-awakedrunks” who hurt themselves or others. Also, try to alternate alcoholic beverages and water throughout the night. You’ll drink less alcohol, save money and avoid hangovers!

4

“Where am I going?”

Get an idea of where the party is and who will be there before going out. This way you can decide beforehand if

Freshmen 18+: Check your VCU email account to see if you’ve been invited to participate in Spit for Science, a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu.

you’re comfortable with where it is and what it’ll be like. Use caution in new situations because “situational tolerance” is a huge factor in alcohol overdoses (see eight-minute YouTube by the same name for amazing info).

5

“How am I getting home?”

6

“How do I feel right now?”

Let Sober You answer this one. Have a plan BEFORE you go out, not when it’s too late. Go in a group, and stick together. Make a pact — we go out together, we come home together — no matter what! A drunken friend might be pissed when dragged home but your friend will thank you later.

Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of your friends getting ready to go out, you forget to assess your own emotions and decide for yourself what you want to do. If you don’t feel like going out and just want to have a quiet night, THAT’S OKAY! If you want to go out, but you don’t want to drink — know that’s a normal choice, too. Listen to your gut and do what you feel like doing. You’ll have a more enjoyable night that way. Want more info? Check out the free online assessment at the Well’s homepage. Or look for the Well’s Alcohol 101 special Stall Seats this year!


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HOAX

ookah smoking may seem to be just inhaling fruit-flavored air — in other words, harmless. But is it? Hookahs use a moist tobacco called “Mu’assel,” which is Arabic for “honeyed.” This sweetened, moist tobacco mixed with organic matter like mango or rose is hard to keep burning. So charcoal, often laced with quick-starting lighter fluid, is placed on top of the hookah tobacco. Hookahs’ cool smoke and make it easier to draw into the lungs. This increases smoke exposure. The average cigarette smoker takes 10 puffs over 5 minutes. Because the smoke is hot, a typical puff is only about 50 ml. Because hookah smoke is cool, even new smokers can inhale deeply and hold about 500 ml per puff. In a single session, a hookah smoker’s lungs are exposed to approximately 50,000 ml of smoke (the equivalent of 25 two-liter bottles). In contrast, by the end of a cigarette, a smoker’s lungs have been exposed to about 500 ml of smoke (half a liter). If you read the label on a package of hookah tobacco, you may see “0%

tar.” True, it’s a gimmick — even cigarettes don’t have tar until you burn them. However, once burning, hookah tobacco smoke contains tar and more. Studies show that water filters out very little of the toxic substances most people worry about such as tar and carbon monoxide. In addition, hookah smoke has many more polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) than cigarette smoke. The PAHs listed here are all known carcinogens, and PAHs are also linked to birth defects and gene mutations. The three aldehydes listed have all been designated as hazardous air pollutants by the EPA. Before you hit the pipe, hit the Internet. Research is ongoing about hookahs and even the risks of secondhand hookah smoke, which is much more toxic than second-hand cigarette smoke. Oh, and don’t buy the myth that you can’t get addicted to hookah. We know students who drive around with hookahs in the cup holders of their cars. Student Health and The Well love to help all smokers and give FREE quit kits at either place.

Toxin Content of Smoke: A single hookah session compared to smoking a cigarette Chemical Type*

Hookah (mg/session)

Cig (mg/session)

Comparison hookah:cigs

“Tar”

802.0

22.3

36 times the tar

Nicotine

2.96

1.74

17.3

2 times the nicotine

Carbon Monoxide

145.0

8 times the CO

Polyaromatic Hydrocarbon*

Hookah (mg/session)

Cig (mg/session)

Comparison hookah:cigs

Fluoranthene

2380

46.2

51 times as much

*Data from Shihadeh & Saleh (2005) and Djordjevic (2000).

Pyrene

2510

33.2

0.6

76 times as much

Di-benzol(a,h) anthracene

147

245 times as much

Aldehydes*

Hookah (mg/episode)

Cig (mg/cig)

Comparison hookah:cigs

Formaldehyde

630

23

27 times as much

*Hookah data from Sepetdjian et al. 2008; Cigarette data from Gmeiner et al. 1977.

Acetaldehyde

Acrolein

2,520 892

619

47

4 times as much

19 times as much

*Data from Al Rashidi et al. 2008

(We would like to thank Dr. Thomas Eissenberg, Director of Clinical Behavioral Pharma-

cology Laboratory at VCU, who assisted in the accuracy of this issue and in understanding how to make a fair comparison.)

Feeling like everyone at VCU smokes?

I

t’s an optical illusion.

How about counting the people who aren’t smoking? We did! The daily smoking rate is the lowest it’s ever been at VCU, 6% among undergraduates — 2% among grad students). And 58% of VCU students have never smoked hookah. Remember that the VCU Smoking Policy designates all university buildings as “no smoking” (which includes vaping e-cigs).”

Vaping: The Truth about E-cigs

  re e-cigarettes safer than real cigarettes? The absolute truth    is that no one knows. Vaping is the trendy term for smoking an e-cig. There are hundreds of different e-cig products on the market. Each product varies by manufacturer and none are regulated by the FDA. Those selling e-cigs have made many claims about their safety. At present, those claims aren’t supported by either short- or long-term studies. Each brand of e-cig also varies in its nicotine content. E-hookah is just an e-cig with a different name. A truth we all know is that nicotine is highly addictive and very lucrative to market. Comparing cigarettes to e-cigs is like comparing apples to bananas — or wait, rather like comparing apples to plastic bananas. Burning organic matter like tobacco causes many known carcinogens. No one knows what vaporizing nicotine, organic flavorings and such chemicals as propylene glycol, present in about half of e-cigs, will do when inhaled repeatedly by humans. Even less is known about the effect of second-hand vapors. If you haven’t started smoking or vaping, ask yourself how much you’d be willing to pay for that buzz over time. If you or someone you know wants to quit either smokin’ or vapin’ — send ’em to us. We love helping students gain freedom from all addictive molecules. Email quit@vcu.edu


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Timing Counts

EAT SMART

M

any college students eat very little in the morning, grab granola bars or possibly lunch when and if they can and eat the most at night. However, if we “flip” this triangle and retrain our bodies to eat in a new way, we will have…

What about energy drinks?

T

hese beverages provide energy from sugar, a few

vitamins and caffeine. They will give you an initial “quick fix” but contribute empty calories. Liquid calories can add up quickly and lead to weight gain. Grabbing a flavored cof-

MORE energy

fee or smoothie can add an

FEWER mood swings LESS food cravings

extra 500 calories! Water and

IMPROVED sleep patterns

nonfat milk are the best bever-

The key lies in MEAL TIMING: Eat carbohydrate and protein foods within one hour of rising and every four hours. Even if you sleep in late, eat within one hour!

age choices. Again, a steady supply of energy comes from applying the principles of meal timing.

Choose a hearty breakfast

Learn to listen to your body’s

• whole grain cereal/oatmeal, fruit and low fat milk

hunger signals for fuel, which

• egg-and-cheese sandwich with orange juice • cheese stick and fruit

Smart, but quick-and-easy lunches

Food Tracker: www.supertracker.usda.gov vegetables and brown rice • sushi with fruit and salad bar

in late evening, but try not to graze all night.

• two or three slices of pizza with side salad

• pasta with meatballs in marinara sauce and cooked vegetables or salad bar

Are you a stress eater?

• grilled chicken wrap with a serving of fruit

Snacks are bridges when meals are more than four hours apart

Try to determine if you are eating food because your body needs it (physical hunger) or because of other reasons (emotional hunger). Avoid stress eating by talking to a friend, journaling, exercising or taking a break.

• turkey-and-cheese sandwich on whole grain bread with vegetable or bean soup

Think color when eating dinner

• chicken/beef/pork stir fry with

• trail mix, nuts, cereal with milk, and/or yogurt make great choices Stay up late? It is okay to eat a healthy meal

Do you use food to cope, celebrate, relax or procrastinate?

naturally occur every four hours!

Can I talk to someone about an individual eating plan for college? Yes! VCU offers FREE personalized nutrition consultations with a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. Appointments are available Tuesday and Wednesdays by calling 8288828 extension 5!

Protein makes a difference!

S

pit for Science in the House! Spit for Science is a study of how genetic and environmental factors contribute to substance use and emotional health. We want participation to be convenient, so we’re coming to you! Do your online survey, then pick up payment and T-shirts at your residence hall: • [Residence Hall]: DATES, TIMES • [Residence Hall]: DATES, TIMES • [Residence Hall]: DATES, TIMES Or at the Student Commons Kiosk, Monday–Friday, 12:30–4:30 p.m. Learn more: www.spit4science.vcu.edu

M

eals that contain protein help keep our blood sugar level steady, which helps you stay focused and able to concentrate. Protein also is responsible for a healthy immune system, which keeps you well! Daily needs are based on body weight. Females need 45–60 grams/day while males need 60–80 grams/ day. Eat protein throughout the day. Animal sources of high quality protein include eggs, milk, yogurt,

beef, pork, poultry and fish. Plant sources include nuts, seeds, soy products (tofu, soy milk/yogurt/ cheese, edamame, veggie burgers and meat alternatives), and legumes (black/kidney/pinto/navy beans, black-eyed peas) as well as lentils. Examples of a protein serving for a meal or snack are three ounces of meat (size of a deck of cards), three eggs, 16 ounces of milk, six to eight ounces of greek yogurt or ½ cup beans.


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VCU Wellness Resource Center

Students feel safe at VCU Really? Yup. According to the Spring 2014 Perception of Safety Survey (n=1,876), 95.5% of faculty, staff and students feel “safe” or “very safe” on campus. Why? Because the VCU Police Department is awesome. They are real Police with more than 90 officers and a 24/7 dispatch center.

815 S. Cathedral Place Richmond VA 23284

V

Our police believe in twoway communication. Talk to the officers as they patrol, on bicycle or on foot. Safety ideas are plentiful: • Don’t let the text alerts freak you out, but do pay attention! Text alerts mean our police are working hard to keep us safe. • As you walk, note the locations of emergency phones. There are more than 370 spread across both campuses — bet you can’t find them all. • If you see a street light that is out, please Text-A-Tip to VCU Police so it gets fixed. • Consider getting some pepper spray or — better yet — look for the “Streetwise Personal/ Door Alarm” that costs less than $10 online. Also consider getting a U-lock to keep your bike safe. • When you are out walking, keep your head up and make eye contact with those you see to show confidence. Travel in groups and use welllighted, well-traveled paths. • The RamSafe service is a great way to get around after 5 pm. Access ramsafe.vcu. edu via desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone or call 828SAFE (7233).

www.thewell.vcu.edu

LiveSafe — the smartphone app for good safety habits

Safety is everyone’s responsibility CU’s urban setting offers many advantages over small rural schools, but it also means we all need to stay alert and look out for one another.

804-828-WELL

Send GPS-tagged messages with audio, video and picture evidence to the police.

Call or chat with campus police, and remain anonymous when you want.

View a campus map with the nearest safety locations (e.g. hospitals, police stations) and other important information.

Allow your friends to monitor you so you never have to walk alone.

How to:

1) Download LiveSafe for Android or IOS. 2) Install on your smartphone. 3) Select VCU as your local agency. 4) Enter your profile information and emergency contacts. 5) Use it!

No smartphone? Contact VCU Police at any of these numbers: On Campus Emergency Off Campus Emergency RamSafe Escort Service Non-emergency reporting Crime prevention

(804) 828-1234 911 (804) 828-7233 (804) 828-1196 (804) 828-6226

Investigations division Victim/witness coordinator General VCU information MCV Hospital Security

River and Bridge Safety

T

here is a lot to do down at the James River in the “River City,” but remember that moving water is always more powerful than you think. Several people, including VCU students, have been killed trying to jump off or jump between bridges. If the river is above 5 feet, lifejackets are required. If it’s above 9 feet no one is allowed in without a permit. Alcohol on the river is illegal. Please remove trash and keep your pets leashed. (And curbed – dog poop causes algae bloom, which kills river life.) Always wear shoes if you’re getting in the river to keep your tootsies from getting cut by the rusty stuff that will cost you a tetanus shot.

Theft: The most reported crime is 100% preventable!

P

revention basics: Lock your doors, record the serial numbers, MAC address and model information for laptops, bikes and other valuables. When left unattended, these items can vanish. Your computer is your academic life. Secure it by checking out LoJack PC, a way for police to find your computer once it goes online.

(804) 828-6409 (804) 828-8696 (804) 828-0100 (804) 828-6595

Distracted Driving: Recipe for a Bad Day When biking or driving, you need three things: your hands, your eyes, and your mind. Texting also requires all three. You can’t multitask-text without a crash risk. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash. Crashes suck… and cost a lot. Most accidents between bikes and cars occur at intersections, so be alert and follow traffic signs and signals. In the street: Walk against traffic; ride your bike with traffic. If you are traveling at night on a bike, the law requires white lights for the front and red lights for the back. If walking or biking, wear white or bright clothes, and it’s safest to have reflective things on moving parts of your body. Oh, and don’t forget the helmet to protect that great brain of yours.


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Do you know your Title IX?

Do you know Red Flags?

T

itle IX prohibits discrimination based on sex in “any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” You may be aware that this applies to athletics, but did you know it also applies to sexual violence? VCU defines sexual misconduct as any unwelcome acts of a sexual nature committed without the consent (informed, knowing, and voluntary) of all parties involved. This includes sexual harassment, non-consensual sexual intercourse, non-consensual sexual contact,

and sexual exploitation. Title IX’s sex discrimination prohibition also extends to claims based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity. VCU is dedicated to creating a community that encourages the reporting of all incidents of sexual misconduct and the prompt and fair resolution of sexual misconduct complaints. More information on Title IX and VCU’s sexual misconduct policy, and how to report, can be found at www.titleix.saf.vcu. edu/what-title-ix/.

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he Red Flag Campaign is a national dating violence awareness campaign, born right here in Richmond. Many of us see “red flags” every day, such as someone texting or calling someone

else excessively, or using hurtful language toward a date, or using drugs or alcohol to coerce someone into sexual activity. But we often don’t know how to step in to stop these situations from escalating and becoming more violent. The Red Flag Campaign asks us all to be active bystanders — be more aware of our surroundings and help or get help when these situations arise. When everyone is an active bystander, everyone is safer. Some ways to intervene: • Call/text the police. • Interrupt: “Hey, let’s go grab a pizza…” “Hey, I think someone stole your ____” • Spill a drink on the person, draw some attention. • Find a security guard or ask a friend to help intervene.

Do you know the Statistics?

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n the United States, 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime (NIJ & CDC, 1998). For every African-American/Black woman who reports rape, at least 15 African-American/Black women do not. 15% of men living with a male intimate partner report being raped, assaulted or stalked by a male cohabitant (CDC, 1999). Studies are few, yet estimates of sexual violence committed against individuals who are transgender are 50–60% (ForgeForward.org).

Do you know

Signs of a Healthy Relationship?

• Respecting each other’s boundaries and each partner’s right to say no. • Working out conflicts through communication and compromise. • Each being supportive of the other partner and his/her decisions. • Allowing time apart to explore each person’s own interests.

www.NotAlone.gov Learn about the White House inititive on sexual assault prevention, and your rights as a student.

Sexual Assault, Intimate Partner Violence and Stalking Advocacy & Prevention Services staff – Front row from left, Kaylin Tingle, Annie Bays, Dominic Reynolds and Calvin Hall. Back row from left, Tammi Slovinsky and Tremayne Robertson.

Don’t forget to take your Spit for Science survey. The survey is optional and all data are confidential.

Learn more: spit4science.vcu.edu.

The Stall Seat Journal: 2014-2015 school year  

The Stall Seat Journal provides the inside scoop on health and wellness to VCU students. VCU Wellness Resource Center produces The Stall Sea...

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