Underage Drinking Effects

1118 Words5 Pages
Despite many teens believing that participating in underage drinking is not harmful, or at least not as harmful as participating in other social or recreational drug use, underage drinking has far-reaching and potentially long-term harmful effects. Underage consumption of alcohol increases the risk of many progressive physical and psychological disease conditions, including poor academic performance, higher incidence of crime, and physical disorders including chronic liver and kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, and impaired cognitive function. Although the short-term physical effects of alcohol abuse are well known, underage drinking dramatically increases the risk of long-term negative psychological, sociological, physiological, and behavioural…show more content…
As public consumption of alcohol by adults has become more socially acceptable in recent years, many teens believe it is also acceptable for them, with parents drinking at home often leading teens by example. In fact, the influences which lead teens to become involved with underage drinking often begin within the home. Alcohol consumption by adolescents is often facilitated by adults as teens are usually unable to legally purchase alcohol on their own. Conversely, parents who introduce their teenage children to alcohol within the home environment moderately and responsibly, have also been shown to effectively educate teens on its negative impacts, resulting in less abuse and more positive outcomes. Alcohol has, however, inflicted a considerable financial toll on society within the United States, with the costs of excessive consumption reaching $249 billion in 2010, or the equivalent of $2.05 per drink. Abuse of alcohol is linked to social ills including sexual assault and motor vehicle accidents, resulting in damage or destruction to property and life. In 2014, 31% of all driving fatalities were linked to alcohol (). Loss of workplace productivity also represents a significant proportion of the financial impact, along with the cost of healthcare, law enforcement, and the criminal justice…show more content…
Underage drinking can negatively impact teens’ relationships with friends, family, and in school. Lack of inhibition caused by alcohol often results in decreased motivation, poor attendance, low grades, and even delinquency, both in school and at home. Teens under the influence of, or dependent on, alcohol tend to be more irritable and defensive, impeding their ability to connect with those who care about them, trying to assist. Furthermore, sloppy appearance, lack of engagement in former interests, lack of motivation for completing assignments, poor concentration and low energy can all affect academic performance. Along with this, lack of interest in listening to adults, as well as disrespecting family members is an additional indicator of the negative effects alcohol use can have on teens. With the risk of poor academic performance, continued alcohol and/or drug addiction, and lack of motivation, the pressures of normal life may appear so overwhelming to some teens that in extreme cases suicide may even be considered. According to The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, data from 2006-2010 indicates that out of 4,3358 deaths of adolescents due to underage drinking, 492 were from
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