Sue Scheff: Underage Drinking - April is Alcohol Awareness Month

Underage drinking and/or teenage drinking is a serious concern for parents. Alcohol is usually more accessible than most drugs. We often hear about college students that binge drink. Could this be the beginning of a dark future called alcoholism?

During the month of April it is time to learn more about teen drinking and underage drinking. The younger you are when you start drinking, the greater your chance of becoming addicted to alcohol at some point in your life. More than 4 in 10 people who begin drinking before age 15 eventually become alcoholics. Children of addicts and alcoholics are four times more likely to become addicts and alcoholics themselves than children of non-addicts.

Why do teens drink?

Experimentation with alcohol during the teen years is common. Some reasons that teens use alcohol and other drugs are:

  • curiosity
  • to feel good, reduce stress, and relax
  • to fit in
  • to feel older
From a very young age, kids see advertising messages showing beautiful people enjoying life - and alcohol. And because many parents and other adults use alcohol socially - having beer or wine with dinner, for example - alcohol seems harmless to many teens. - Source: Kids Health for Teens

Talk to your kids about the dangers of alcohol. Talk to your kids about the dangers of drinking. Simply talk to your kids. Education is the key to prevention.

In Broward County there is a Task Force to Combat Underage Drinking. For more information, contact Pat Castillo, Director of Youth Programs at the Broward County Commission on Substance Abuse at 954-760-7007.

The Task Force to Combat Underage Drinking in Broward County was created in 2004 by The United Way of Broward County Commission on Substance Abuse (BCCSA) with guidance from the Florida Office of Drug Control and funding from the Florida Department of Transportation. The Task Force mission is to reduce underage drinking in Broward County.

Be an educated parent, you will have safer and healthier kids.

Read more and watch video.

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