By: Gina-Marie Miraglia
Every April we observe Alcohol Awareness Month. During this observance, we aim to increase public awareness and understanding of alcoholism while breaking the stigmas connected to the disease. This year the theme is “Changing Attitudes: It’s not a ‘rite of passage.’” During the month of April; local, state, and national events will take place with the focus to educate people about prevention and treatment for alcoholism with a strong focus on educating the youth and their parents.
When young individual uses or misuse alcohol they are not only putting themselves at risk, but society as a whole. Alcohol use is related to numerous issues such as; fatal car accidents, violence, suicide, overdose, unprotected sex, and other problematic behaviors. Parents often forgive underage drinking as a ‘rite of passage’, not realizing how detrimental ignoring this behavior can be.
Research has shown that kids who have conversations with their parents about dangers associated with alcohol use are 50% less likely to use alcohol than those whose parents do not have that conversation. Thus not only keeping their kids safer, but reducing social disparities as well. By talking to your children about the consequences of alcohol use, you not only have the power to change their attitudes and behaviors, but the wellbeing of your community as well.
“Alcohol and drug use is a very risky business for young people,” says Andrew Pucher, President and CEO of NCADD, “and parents can make a difference. The longer children delay drinking and drug use, the less likely they are to develop any problems associated with it. That’s why it is so important to help your child make smart decisions about alcohol and drugs.”
As a community, we can all play an active role to prevent alcohol misuse and abuse.
For more information please visit: https://www.ncadd.org/aam