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teen alcohol abuse

Earlier, Parent Supervised Alcohol Use Doesn’t Mean Safer Drinking in the Long Term

Alcohol consumption is the leading risk factor for death and disability in individuals aged 15-24.

Alcohol use in teens is a rampant and very serious problem. Even so, some parents actually host alcohol-fueled parties and get togethers on behalf of their teens.

Are they bad parents? Not necessarily, but they may be misinformed ones. Indeed, some moms and dads assume that, by allowing their kids to drink under their supervision, they can monitor and hopefully control their alcohol consumption.

Study Explores Binge Drinking Risks

A recent Lancet study proves otherwise, as 81 percent of teen-agers who received alcohol from their parents and others reported binge drinking, as compared to 62 percent who accessed it through other people only. In addition, teens given alcohol by only their parents in one given year were twice as likely to get alcohol from other sources the following year.

Perhaps most tellingly, teens who receive alcohol from their parents as well as other sources stood at the greatest risk of alcohol abuse, alcohol use disorders and alcohol dependence.

The study concluded, logically, that parental supply of alcohol does not lesson or mitigate the risk of teen drinking; and can indeed encourage alcohol abuse in teens. In addition, increased alcohol consumption can lead to bad decision making and even usage of other substances like prescription drugs or meth abuse.

So, what should you do if your teen asks you to host a party that features alcohol on the refreshment list? Well here are a few suggestions that you might see fit to try:

  1. Say no. Now that wasn’t so hard, was it? Seriously, though; at times it’s not the word itself, but rather how you say it. As opposed to being condemning or judgmental, deliver your answer in a calm and understanding manner; asserting your rights as a parent while understanding the peer pressure that they may be facing in regards to underaged drinking.
  2. Encourage your friends to say no. Share this article and its origin study with the parents of your teen’s friends, urging them to stand strong with you against the concept of alcohol-fueled parties. Also check back with them in the future to ensure that they are staying true to your agreement; and to your shared conviction to fight alcohol use in teens.
  3. Say yes to other things. If you make other allowances in regards to your teen’s celebrations, then they might be more likely to adhere to your rules. Let them play their rock or party music a little bit louder (not so amplified, of course, that it wakes the neighbors or attracts the authorities!), eat a few more sweets, and extend their curfew by a half hour or so.

Kokua Recovery can help

Kokua Recovery is an adolescent recovery program aimed to aid teens aged 13-17 struggling with addiction; with an emphasis on healing the trauma that caused the addiction. Call 877-302-5022 for more information.

Ken Huey

Upon graduating from Purdue with a Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy, Dr. Huey worked as a therapist, Clinical Director, and Business Development Director in residential treatment. Dr. Huey was always drawn to the large population of adoptees in residential treatment (he is adopted himself). He ultimately became convinced that this population needed specialty care and in November of 2006, Dr. Huey founded Calo. Calo grew to a 200 plus employee organization with about the same numbers of teen clients served each year. He sold Calo and retired in June of 2015. He came out of retirement in 2017 and founded Kokua Recovery, trauma-informed residential drug and alcohol treatment with sites in Colorado.

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