Underage Drinking

teen_drinkingWhat What do we all know about underage drinking? What are the risks towards our teens? Teens are particularly vulnerable to alcohol use.
The physical changes from puberty might make your teen feel self-conscious and coping with everyday stress may turn them to experimenting with alcohol beginning in middle school through high school; moving, dealing with the effects of divorcing parents, and more may also influence a teen to drink.
What are the consequences of underage drinking? Underage drinking can lead to alcohol related fatalities from driving accidents, suicides, even drowning in a friend’s pool or at the beach while swimming. Statistically, teens who drink tend to become sexually active earlier and have sex more often than teens who don’t drink.
Young adults who begin drinking as a teen develop alcohol dependencies, may turn to violent crimes such as rape, assault or even robbery. Teens who start drinking at this age may develop severe health issues later on in life such as cirrhosis of the liver.
If you suspect that your teen has been drinking and you’ve noticed mood changes or behavior problems, or your teen has red or glazed eyes or unusual health complaints, please talk to him or her. Enforce the consequences you’ve established so that your teen understands that using alcohol will always result in loss of privileges. Rules should include no underage drinking, leaving parties where alcohol is served and not riding in a car with a driver who’s been drinking.
The best advice is for parents to set an example in front of your children and not consume alcohol. Teens who have alcohol problems aren’t likely to realize it or seek help on their own. You can encourage your teen to avoid drinking alcohol by talking to him or her about the risks of underage drinking and the importance of making good decisions.
Kathleen Johnson organizes the Moriches Bay in the kNOw Prevention Coalition. Parents are urged to bring their teens to these meetings where they will learn the facts about underage drinking or you can visit the website at https://morichescommunitycenter.org/programs/moriches-bay-in-the-know/
For more information about Moriches Bay in the kNOw, please contact the Moriches Community Center at 631-909-8320 or send an email at Info@morichescommunitycenter.org.

Filed in: Center Moriches Update

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