It’s Summertime. Make the Living Easy and Alcohol-Free For Teens
Summer is here and school is out. Before teens begin to enjoy longer, more leisurely days, their parents need to talk with them about underage drinking consequences. As reported in an issue of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) The NSDUH Report, “Monthly Variation in Substance Use Initiation among Adolescents,” (PDF—704KB) nearly 11,000 12- to 17-year-olds per day begin using alcohol during June and July (December rates are similar). By comparison, during most other months of the year, between 5,000 and 8,000 youth per day first try alcohol.
Why the increased risk during summertime? One possible explanation is unsupervised time. In Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility, the National Research Council concluded that “As adolescents get older, they spend more and more time alone or with other peers in unsupervised settings, and both age-segregation and lack of adult supervision have been related to higher levels of substance abuse and deviance, including greater alcohol consumption.” As such, adults need to know about the risk for teen drinking during summer.
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