Teenage drinking-solutions, causes, and effects

Topics: Alcoholism, Alcoholic beverage, Drinking culture Pages: 14 (4999 words) Published: December 4, 2002
Teenage Drinking has been a factor in the past years. There are causes of drinking as well as effects of drinking and solutions.

There are many causes that are related to drinking. One cause is peer pressure. Peer pressure comes from older people that are probably already drunk at the time, trying to force a teenager to have an alcoholic drink. Usually the teenager says yes. About 92% of high school seniors have admitted having tried alcohol. Many of them have tried their first drink around the age of 12. Every year 10,000 people from the ages of 16-25 die from alcohol and half of the deaths from car crashes involving impaired vision when driving. "Alcohol related crashes are the leading cause of deaths for teens," states Dr. Mark S. Gold of Fair Oaks Hospital. Teenagers may not have much experience with alcohol, so it's hard for them to judge their own limits.

Another cause of teenage drinking is trying to fit in with a group. It might be an initiation process to get in or a week party. A cause of teenage drinking that may influence teenagers drinking is the beer commercials that are advertised on TV during the shows that teenagers watch. Many experts agree that the main reason teens are becoming alcoholics is low self-esteem. Another cause of teenage drinking is escape from stress of school if they are overwhelmed with work or that they get really worried over slipping grades and that they just need to relax. By the time students are in seventh grade sixty-three percent of boys and fifty-four percent of girls have at least tried alcoholic beverages.

Some effects of teenage drinking are the side effects. Some side effects are hangovers, blackouts, headache, dehydration, and loss of concentration, memory problems, and visual disturbances. Other long-term effects are the cirrhosis of the liver, mental retarded ness, and after a while it can lead to sleeping disorders. Alcohol is a gateway drug that leads to other drugs. Most teens by their senior year of high school have tried alcohol or are still inducing alcoholic beverages. Teens drink for the effect. To get high, to rebel, to alter their feelings of their environment, if only temporary. In other words, when a child is fourteen and starts drinking to become more social and relaxed, when he is eighteen he will still be fourteen socially.

Many adults fail to take teenage alcohol problems seriously because they believe that their teens are too young to worry about. To them the word alcoholic makes them think of a malnourished person who lives on the street. Many parents who are drinkers themselves look past teenage drinking. They see drinking as a normal activity and part of growing up. Children of alcoholics are a high-risk group for alcoholism. By the time students are in seventh grade sixty-three percent of boys and fifty-four percent of girls have at least tried alcoholic beverages. Getting alcohol is easy. Kids can drink their parent's supply; they get an older friend to get it, buy a fake driver's licensee, or go somewhere that doesn't check ID's. As children's nervous systems are not fully developed, the alcohol is absorbed into their bodies faster, making them more likely to get alcohol poisoning.

I believe that Generation X exists; however, I do not think that everyone in this generation fits the description peddled by the media. The media feels the need to hang labels on each generation and give them each their own characteristics, but I fail to see the reasoning in all the name-calling and insults. The media builds they are nothing but slackers. I guess the reason the media makes the generations sound so mythical is because it's the myths that sell in the real world.

Effective educational programs help teenagers understand the true impact of drinking on American society. They reinforce the young person's ability to make independent decisions and they provide accurate information instead of attempting influence through social tactics. Alateen is a...
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