Teen drinking is a serious health problem.
Did you know that..?
- 37% of 8th graders report having consumed alcohol
- more than 50% of all teens report having had at least 1 drink by 15 years old
- more than 70% of all teens report having had at least 1 drink by 18 years old
- more teens use alcohol than smoke
- teens who start drinking before age 15 are 5 times more likely to develop alcohol dependence/abuse than those who begin drinking after age 21
- about 5,000 kids under age 21 die every year as a result of under-aged drinking
- binge drinking, consuming many drinks in a short period of time, occurs in almost 20% of boys age 15 and girls age 16-17
- teens who drink are more likely to be victims of physical or sexual assault than their peers who do not drink
Why teens drink…
- teens, as they mature, often try to assert their independence and take risks and do not realize or understand the consequences of their choices and actions
- peer pressure, to fit in
- to feel good, reduce stress, to relax
- easy access: most teens who drink get it from their home
- drinking often portrayed in the media as fun, relaxing, entertaining, sexy
- poor self esteem, depression, anger
Ways parents can prevent under-aged drinking…
- make it harder for teens to obtain it (do not let them have ANY access in home)
- drink responsibly if you, as apparent do drink in front of your teen
- TALK to your teen about the dangers of alcohol
- KNOW your teen’s friends, and their families
- have dinners together and talk about how life is going—BE involved in your teen’s life!