Teens using alcohol is a common problem that comes with significant risks. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), those risks include:
- Death – 5,000 people under age 21 die each year from alcohol-related car crashes, homicides, suicides, alcohol poisoning, and other injuries such as falls, burns, and drowning.
- Serious injuries – More than 190,000 people under age 21 visited an emergency room for alcohol-related injuries in 2008 alone.
- Impaired judgment – Drinking can cause kids to make poor decisions, which can then result in risky behavior like drinking and driving, sexual activity, or violence.
- Increased risk for physical and sexual assault – Youth who drink are more likely to carry out or be the victim of a physical or sexual assault.
- Brain development problems – Research shows that brain development continues well into a person’s twenties. Alcohol can affect this development, and contribute to a range of problems
I believe that in understanding these risks, parents and educators can better steer teens away from the potential “fun” that they can perceive from using alcohol. For more information regarding teen alcohol use, the NIH published a fact sheet from which i took the above risks. The complete fact sheet is at the link below. Please share this post to anyone who would like to keep their teen healthy.