Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Facts About Underage Drinking

You probably see and hear a lot about alcohol—from TV, movies, music, and your friends. But what are the real facts about underage alcohol use?

Myth Alcohol isn't as harmful as other drugs.
FACT Alcohol increases your risk for many deadly diseases, such as cancer. Drinking too much alcohol too quickly can lead to alcohol poisoning, which can kill you.

Myth Drinking is a good way to loosen up at parties.
FACT Drinking is a dumb way to loosen up. It can make you act silly, say things you shouldn't say, and do things you wouldn't normally do (like get into fights).

Myth Drinking alcohol will make me cool.
FACT There's nothing cool about stumbling around, passing out, or puking on yourself. Drinking alcohol also can cause bad breath and weight gain.

Myth All of the other kids drink alcohol. I need to drink to fit in.
FACT If you really want to fit in, stay sober. Most young people don't drink alcohol. Research shows that more than 70 percent of youth age 12 to 20 haven't had a drink in the past month.1
 
Myth I can sober up quickly by taking a cold shower or drinking coffee.
FACT On average, it takes 2 to 3 hours for a single drink to leave the body. Nothing can speed up the process, not even drinking coffee, taking a cold shower, or "walking it off."

Myth Adults drink, so kids should be able to drink too.
FACT A young person's brain and body are still growing. Drinking alcohol can cause learning problems or lead to adult alcoholism. People who begin drinking by age 15 are five times more likely to abuse or become dependent on alcohol than those who begin drinking after age 20.2
 
Myth Beer and wine are safer than liquor.
FACT Alcohol is alcohol. It can cause you problems no matter how you consume it. One 12-ounce bottle of beer or a 5-ounce glass of wine (about a half cup) has as much alcohol as a 1.5-ounce shot of liquor. Alcopops—sweet drinks laced with malt liquor—often contain more alcohol than beer!

Myth I can drink alcohol and not have any problems.
FACT If you're under 21, drinking alcohol is a big problem: It's illegal. If caught, you may have to pay a fine, perform community service, or take alcohol awareness classes. Kids who drink also are more likely to get poor grades in school and are at higher risk for being a crime victim.


Sources

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Residential Programs: Does My Teen Need One?

Worried about your teen?
We are rounding up second semester and looking at spring break.  Parents are worried as their high school student (teenager) is still failing, refusing to complete assignments and still believes that education is a farce.

On the other hand we know our child is more than capable of getting A's and B's yet they are barely bringing home D's.  College?  We are praying they finish high school. 

What is wrong with society? Why are kid of the notion that they can just drop out of high school and get a GED?  Years ago GED's were frowned upon--only for those that were either adjudicated or maybe medically necessary.  Now it is too easy for these kids to just drop out.

Then we have teens that want to smoke pot on a daily basis.  You know it is legal in some states. You know their parents do it.  Really, is it that bad?  Well, as a matter of fact - it is.

Marijuana, especially when sold on the streets to our kids, is more likely to be laces with other ingredients - possibly even  heroin.   What happens then?  Do you have an addict on your hands now?  Anyway you cut this - teens shouldn't be smoking pot.  Cigarettes?  Let's face it - it is bad for your health, but it doesn't alter your personalty - and there are times when a parent has to pick and choose issues.

I don't condone cigarettes - I don't smoke them, but I wouldn't look for residential therapy for them either.

Back to drug use and failing academics.  If your teen is nearing 17 years old and you are watching them throw their life away, it may be time to consider residential therapy - an emotional growth program.  Once that offers academics, therapy and enrichment programs. 

I don't believe in anything punitive, primitive or harsh - this is about building a child back up again to make better choices.  Giving them that inspiration to reach into adulthood with a  passion.  Yes, there are great programs that can instill this into teens.

For more information contact www.helpyourteens.com.

Friday, February 1, 2013

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

Is your teen old enough to date? 

This is usually a decision based on your teen's maturity level.  Are they responsible? Do they respect your rules and boundaries? 

Let's put it in to reality and look at some statistics to share with them.

Dating Abuse Statistics:

Young adult dating violence is a big problem, affecting youth in every community across the nation. Learn the facts below.

Too Common
  • Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.
  • One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence.
  • One in 10 high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend.
  • One quarter of high school girls have been victims of physical or sexual abuse.
Why Focus on Young People?
  • Girls and young women between the ages of 16 and 24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence -- almost triple the national average.
  • Violent behavior typically begins between the ages of 12 and 18.
  • The severity of intimate partner violence is often greater in cases where the pattern of abuse was established in adolescence.
  • About 72% of eighth and ninth graders are “dating".
Long-lasting Effects
  • Violent relationships in adolescence can have serious ramifications by putting the victims at higher risk for substance abuse, eating disorders, risky sexual behavior and further domestic violence.
  • Being physically or sexually abused makes teen girls six times more likely to become pregnant and twice as likely to get a STI.
  • Half of youth who have been victims of both dating violence and rape attempt suicide, compared to 12.5% of non-abused girls and 5.4% of non-abused boys.
Dating Violence and the Law
  • Eight states currently do not include dating relationships in their definition of domestic violence. As a result, young victims of dating abuse often cannot apply for restraining orders.
  • New Hampshire is the only state where the law specifically allows a minor of any age to apply for a protection order; more than half of states do not specify the minimum age of a petitioner.
  • Currently only one juvenile domestic violence court in the country focuses exclusively on teen dating violence.
Lack of Awareness
  • Only 33% of teens who were in a violent relationship ever told anyone about the abuse.
  • Eighty one percent of parents believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue. 
  • A teen’s confusion about the law and their desire for confidentiality are two of the most significant barriers stopping young victims of abuse from seeking help. 






Visit www.loveisrespect.org for more information.