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08-22 Dealing with alcohol abuse in teenagers

Posted in Alcohol

Dealing with alcohol abuse in teenagers

Figures revealing teenage drinking patterns in America present a grim picture. Underage drinking is an enormous public health concern that parents and federal agencies are grappling with on a continual basis. Despite community-based health care workers and physicians persistently warning about the adverse effects of alcohol, most teenagers in the country continue to look at drinking as an essential rite of passage to adulthood.

The risks of drinking alcohol are manifold and can be calamitous, if not controlled early. This makes it necessary for parents and guardians to be aware of their wards’ daily activities, in addition to their habits. There may be myriad factors responsible for a rising affinity in teenagers toward alcohol and consequent dependence on it. Health care service providers treating adolescents for alcohol addiction problems at teen alcohol rehabs suggest the following common reasons why kids develop chronic drinking habits:

  • Loneliness, low self-respect and symptoms of depression;
  • To tackle feelings of uneasiness after being bullied in school;
  • Getting rid of emotional turmoil arising out of family problems;
  • Enhancing reputation or bringing about a change in perception in image among peers;
  • Relenting desire to fit with friends.

Underage drinking

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), 60 percent of American adolescents have had at least one drink by the time they turn 18. In 2015, an estimated 7.7 million teenagers in the country, aged 12-20 years, said that they had more than “just a few sips” of alcohol in the previous month. Some teenagers tend to drink in large quantities, a behavior identified as binge drinking. Statistics by the NIAAA show how young Americans aged 12-20 years take nearly 11 percent of the total quantity of alcohol consumed across the nation.

Parents looking to restrain their wards’ high-risk behaviors like drinking alcohol are keen to adopt ideas that can help substitute the kind of thrill teens seek in such habits. Psychologists suggest that parents can initiate discussions and meaningful conversations about various challenging activities to enable their teenaged children realize their interests and accordingly steer their attentiveness in that direction. Parents may raise certain questions during discussions with children that include:

  • What activity or interest makes them feel most ecstatic?
  • What is the most valuable thing or relationship according to them?
  • What is the most exciting thing they had ever done or imagined themselves doing?
  • If they were given eight hours to themselves, in what kind of activity would they like to dedicate maximum amount of time?

In addition, parents can encourage their children to participate in sports or other creative activities that keep them occupied. Instead of presuming their children’s interests, it is best for parents to ask them what they would like to do and help them participate in that.

Road to recovery

The effects of excessive drinking can prove disastrous to anyone, especially teenagers and young adults. According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), about 623,000 adolescents aged 12-17 had alcohol use disorder (AUD). However, only 37,000 adolescents received treatment for an alcohol problem in a rehab center in 2015.

Recovery from alcohol addiction is possible, thanks to innovative treatment options and behavioral therapies available at a reputed rehab center. As a leading behavioral health care provider, Sovereign Health of Rancho San Diego uses state-of-the-art technology to gauge the extent of dependence so that patients can get the necessary treatment. For more information about our treatment centers for teens, call our 24/7 helpline number. You can also chat online with one of our experts to seek more information about treatment options for teenage alcohol addiction.

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