A Simple Sip Can Be Dangerous
There has been a long debate on the harms of allowing your teen to consume alcohol at home under the supervision of parents. Some parents are more willing than others to let their kids have a drink at home while others completely frown upon it. But what are the explicit harms in allowing your underage child to consume alcohol at home? Some parents often believe that as long as their child is in the safety of the home, there is no real danger in allowing them to have a drink. This pattern, some believe, often leads to alcohol abuse later on in life. On the other hand, there is the view point that allowing your child to try a drink early on will make alcohol have less of an alluring effect when they are legal to drink it, lessening the chances of them abusing the substance later on in life.
What it truly boils down to is how the household views alcohol and the idea around it. There is strong evidence which shows that allowing your children to drink at home before they are legally allowed to holds several risks.
Risk Factors Involved
There are a number of risk factors involved in allowing your child to drink alcohol within the home. The early indulgence of alcohol can promote binge drinking and drug use later on in the individual’s life. Since the teenage brain is still in a phase of crucial development, invaders such as alcohol and disrupt that natural growth of the brain. This, in turn, can affect normal brain development which can hinder various aspects of the individuals life.
When parents allow their children to drink alcohol at home, they are normalizing the act of drinking as means to realax or be social which transaltes to being ‘ok’ in the eyes of the teen as well as the parents. Studies suggest that underage children who drink at home are more likely to also drink outside of the home despite not being under the supervision of a parent.
Additionally, drinking from an early age can have an effect on the endocrine system. In turn, regular growth and development are hindered. Consuming alcohol during the crucial time of teen development can distrub the balance of hormoes which can negatively effect organs, the repsorudctive system, and bone density.
The Drug of Choice
Unfortuently, alcohol is the most widley used and abused substance among youth and adults alike. When adolescents begin to drink at home with parental consent, they are building up a tolderance for alcohol without really knowing it. This means that when they reach the legal drinking age, they have a higher tolerance than those who have not yet consumed alcohol. In turn, this could lead to the individual requirng an increased amount of alcohol in order to feel its effects. This can result in alcohol dependence and even alcohol addiction later on in life.
It’s suggested that parents do not envourage or promote drinking alcohol within the home as this can lead to a dangerous pattern of alcohol consumption later on in the childs life. Instead, parents should be educating their kids of the potential hazards of alcohol misuse so that they are informed when they reach the legal drinking age.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.