Tips and tricks to have a happy, healthy Spring Break
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 20, 2023) — To help ensure a happy and healthy Spring Break, POWER (Prevention, Outreach and Wellness Education Resources), housed in the University of Kentucky's Office for Student Success, has the following tips:
- Arrive safely. Spring breakers usually drive through the night to make it to spring break destinations. Studies have shown that being awake for more than 24 hours is equal to having a blood alcohol content of .10%. That’s higher than the legal limit in every state. If you can’t avoid night driving, have at least one person stay awake to talk to the driver. Do your research on where you are traveling and plan for possible weather conditions.
- Use the buddy system. It’s always best to take a friend with you and never leave your friend behind. If, for whatever reason, you do leave without your friends, give them details about where you’re going and when to expect you back. Keep your phone charged at all times, and if you’re using a ride-share, ensure the car/driver matches the information provided in the app. Lastly, if your friend has had too much to drink, take them back to their room and keep an eye on them. If you think they have alcohol poisoning, call 911.
- Know your environmental tolerance. If you’ve ever been surprised by the effects of what you consider a normal amount of alcohol, environmental tolerance could be the explanation. When your body expects to intake alcohol, it adapts and prepares for the substance. If you usually drink at a friend’s house, each time you drive down the same street, walk through the same door, smell the same smells, etc., your body anticipates that you will be drinking and adapts to prepare for the alcohol. This all happens before your first sip and without you knowing it. But if you go on a trip for spring break, your body doesn’t get the same cues or get prepared. Even if you drink the same thing and amount, it will affect you more than you’d expect. If you are in a new environment, you won’t have the same tolerance level, so it is best to take it easy.
- For more information on alcohol and other drug services offered by POWER, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Understand your sexual health. Be mindful of your birth control prescription and check to see when you need a new cycle. If a birth control item needs to be picked up from the pharmacy, ensure it is done before you leave for your trip. If it is something you need to schedule an office visit for, be sure to do that well in advance.
- As far as sexual health resources are concerned, plan ahead and stop by either the University Health Service Student Health restrooms for condoms or the POWER Suite, located on the Gatton Student Center East Wing 3rd Floor, for various sexual health items. You can also email the UK Sexperts to get sexual health items at email@example.com. Ensure you are storing your items in appropriate containers that won’t get damaged and are not exposed to extreme temperatures. Additional sexual health items can be found at the Office of LGBTQ* Resources.
- It is crucial to know your status before engaging in any sexual activity. You can schedule an appointment for STI testing at University Health Service at any time. Get Yourself Tested (GYT) Clinics are available to students for walk-in testing in the POWER Suite before and after Spring Break. You can find more information about those by checking out the @uksexperts Instagram account. For more information about Sexual Health services offered by POWER, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Hydrate and protect your skin. Be sure you are drinking enough water throughout your trip. Being in the sun, drinking alcohol, and spending time in the water can all dehydrate you. Too much time in the sun can leave you dehydrated with an increased risk of sunburn. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using a sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher that protects against UVA and UVB rays. In addition to sunscreen, consider wearing UPF clothing or staying in the shade to protect yourself from the sun.
Not traveling for the break? POWER recommends catching up on sleep, trying a new hobby, volunteering, exercising and getting ahead on schoolwork.
For more information about POWER click here.
At the University of Kentucky, students are at the center of all that we do. From the moment you become a Wildcat through graduation and beyond, the Office for Student Success is committed to supporting you. Comprised of five areas and 25 units, together, they have one vision — to help students live a life of meaning. Student Success works through an equitable, holistic and inclusive lens to design and deliver unparalleled services and support a diverse community of learners in achieving their wildest ambitions. In the Office for Student Success this is what we do — this is who we are. You can explore resources available to you here. If you have additional questions, you can reach a Student Success team member by calling the helpline 859-218-YouK (9685).