Teen Alcoholism

  • Length: 1852 words (5.3 double-spaced pages)
  • Rating: Excellent
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

     “In 1991, a study by the United States Surgeon General’s office stated that 8 million out of the 20.7 million young people in grades 7 through 12 drank alcoholic beverages every week. It went on to say that 454,000 of those youngsters reported weekly binges (Claypool 21).” In the United States and all over the world underage teens are drinking, and it may be because they just don’t know about alcohol and its effects (Monroe 56). Underage or teen drinking is a major problem today that is increasing more and more, and something needs to be done to stop this increase and to control the number of underage drinkers.

There are many statistics that show just how big this problem is amongst our youth. One frightening statistic that shows how much this problem has been increasing is that between 1948 and 1988 the percent of teen drinkers increased by 57 percent (Nielsen 47). Many parents may think that their child may not drink until they are much older, but the average age that teenagers try alcohol is between the ages twelve and sixteen (9). Also, a 1995 study taken by the University of Michigan stated that 35 out of 100 high school seniors drank 5 or more drinks at one time at least once during their two week survey period (Claypool 10). “ A recent poll by the National Association of Student Councils found that alcohol was the leading school problem and 46 percent [of students] said it was the school’s most serious problem (Monroe 53).” This may be because alcohol is very dangerous because it is a poisonous drug that can be very addictive (Mitchell 6).
In order to help solve this problem of underage drinking we must first try to understand why teens drink alcohol. There are many reasons why a young teen may choose to drink alcohol. A national survey, taken in 1995, showed that 87 percent of parents thought that teens drank because of peer pressure, but 79 percent of teenagers said it was just because they liked the feeling they got when they drank (27). The main reason and the biggest reason why teens drink would probably have to be peer pressure, but there are many other reasons other than peer pressure why a teen might drink.

“In addition to peer influences, some experts believe that media depiction of alcohol use in print advertising, television and radio commercials, and fictional television programs such as sitcoms and dramatic series glamorizes alcohol to young people and can influence their decision to drink (Mitchell 28).

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Teen Alcoholism." 123HelpMe.com. 26 May 2018
Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on The Problem of Teen Alcoholism in the United States - Teen alcoholism is a problem that has been plaguing the United States for many decades now. The legal age for alcohol consumption is twenty-one years old in every state of the United States, but this law is commonly broken. The fact that it has not been strictly enforced caused an outbreak of alcohol consumption between minors all over, and because of this, we have been accepting teenage drinking more than ever. The problem lies in the lack of law enforcement, the acceptance by parents and guardians, and the overall attitude of teenagers themselves....   [tags: Underage Drinking On The Rise]
:: 7 Works Cited
3676 words
(10.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Problem of Teen Alcoholism in the United States Essay - From pastures to unsupervised blowouts at home, the social calendars of most teens are full of alcohol. Other drugs rise and fall in popularity from generation to generation, but alcohol never really goes out of style. From being worshiped by the ancient Babylonians to being forbidden to teenagers, alcohol has caused many problems. Today, drinking is the drug of choice by teens and causes most wrecks and deaths today. To understand alcohol people must first know the history of alcohol, the effects of teen drinking, and the solutions to teen drinking....   [tags: Drinking Underage Alcohol Abuse Essays]
:: 7 Works Cited
1857 words
(5.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Problem of Teen Alcoholism in the United States Essay - General View: It's very interesting that I find myself writing about something that not only is commonsense, but what is more, something that every one knows about in general but may not in particular. Alcohol use among teenagers is a serious problem and is responsible for death and injury in automobile accidents, physical and emotional disability, deterioration of academic performances, aggressive behavior that causes a number of other sociological problems in families and among friends. It is also the primary cause of criminal behavior and a leading cause of broken marriages....   [tags: essays research papers] 1095 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Alcohol, Drinking, and Alcoholism - Confessions of a Teen Alcoholic - Confessions of a Teen Alcoholic The beginning, was innocent in appearance - merely a bottle of my father's beer, in order to calm myself before the big exam. My first drink, an experiment recommended by a friend in the senior class, was meant only as a last resort - I needed to pass this test, you realize. Ah, but how that amber liquid metamorphosed to pure silk in my mouth, sloshing down my throat at first, quickly changing to a tender caress. The first sip, followed by a second, and a third, and so on in rapid sequence....   [tags: Personal Narrative Essays] 616 words
(1.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Teen Alcohol Addiction Essay - Teen alcohol addiction - Is there any hope for a teenager who wants to get his or her life straightened out. It's very interesting that I find myself writing about something that not only is commonsense, but what is more, something that every one knows about in general but may not in particular. Alcohol use among teenagers is a serious problem and is responsible for death and injury in automobile accidents, physical and emotional disability, deterioration of academic performances, aggressive behavior that causes a number of other sociological problems in families and among friends....   [tags: Alcoholism] 1508 words
(4.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on Alcoholism and Parenting: Samuel Adams - The subject of parents consuming alcohol and how it affects their children is one that has plagued this world since long before the introduction of the first Samuel Adams. Alcohol damages brain cells and can prevent someone from making correct decisions. Having alcohol in one’s system can lead to violent and very dangerous rampages, and adding children to this mix is extremely harmful to them not only physically but also emotionally. Dr. Michael Windle explains that “alcohol abuse can interfere with parenting skills and marital relations, thereby affecting adolescent development and adjustment” (Effects on Children of Alcohol Dependent Parents)....   [tags: criminal activity, dependency on alcohol]
:: 5 Works Cited
950 words
(2.7 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Teenage Drinking and Its Effects on the Development of Alcoholism Later - Teenage Drinking and Its Effects on the Development of Alcoholism Later Teenage drinking is something that goes on every day. No matter how many videos you show to kids about drinking they will still drink. Surveys show that the average teen seventeen and up spends $475.00 a year on liquor, mostly beer; that's more than books, soda, coffee, juice and milk combined. Most parents don't know about teenage drinking unless they catch their kids doing it. Parents usually say "oh, my my kid would never do that ", and they're the ones whose kids probably drink more that the average teen....   [tags: Drinking Alcoholism Teenagers Essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
1597 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Disease of Alcoholism Essay - The Disease of Alcoholism Alcoholism is a primary, chronic disease with genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. Alcoholism is a complex disease with physical, social and psychological consequences, but it can be treated through detoxification and anti-anxiety drugs. What will be explained in this essay is basically the history of alcohol, signs of one possibly being an alcoholic, possibilities to why one becomes an alcoholic, and treatments for it....   [tags: Papers] 1074 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Teen Drinking - Teen Drinking In today's society teenaged alcoholism is a very serious problem that needs to be addressed more in schools and in homes. Alcohol is a serious drug that can cause serious damage. The reason alcohol is considered a drug is because it has a very powerful addiction, in which people cannot overcome easily. Alcohol is an overwhelming substance that can and will affect the mind and the body. Some tragic effects of teenage alcoholism are diseases and disorders, family problems and last it alters your decision making skills....   [tags: Personal Essays] 587 words
(1.7 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about Alcoholism - Alcoholism and its Effects On the Family Alcohol is a very powerful drug. It can ruin someone’s life. It may also be able to ruin everyone that alcoholic lives around. But first what is alcoholism. Alcoholism is a chronic disorder characterized by dependence on alcohol, repeated excessive use of alcoholic beverages, development of withdrawal symptoms on reducing or ceasing alcohol intake, morbidity that may include cirrhosis of the liver, and decreased ability to function socially and vocationally....   [tags: essays research papers] 646 words
(1.8 pages)
Good Essays [preview]

Related Searches

” The media today is very influential, and by viewing alcohol being glamorized some teens think that it is acceptable to drink. Many teenagers are fascinated by some of the alcohol commercials on television such as the comedic Budweiser ads, and researchers believe that this fascination may lead them to try the product being advertised (30).

Peer pressure is a huge issue for a teenager these days and it affects many decisions a teen might make. Being a teen can be an awkward situation, and in order to fit in and feel less awkward teens might start to drink, but what they don’t know is that it may not be so easy to stop (Landau 52). Some teens would do anything to “be cool” so if the “cool” teens told them drink, they might just be pressured into doing so as well (Nielsen 53).

Many times peer pressure and social situations seem to be similar in that they both can cause a teenager to do something they normally wouldn’t do. The only difference is that with peer pressure he or she is forced to make a decision and with social situations, the teen makes the decision. A teen’s social environment can also lead him to start drinking. For example, a teen might try drinking in order to loosen up or to be less shy, and if he thinks that he did loosen up he might want to do it again (Mitchell 25). Many social situations such as a party or school function may present the opportunity to drink, and if teens see that everybody else is drinking they might do it too (27). Sometimes a teen boy might drink so that he can impress his friends by drinking a lot, and show then that he is a “real man” (Landau 53).

Teenagers might also choose to drink because they have emotional or family problems. Many teens may drink to escape from their emotional problems such as depression and anxiety (53). The root of their emotional problems may be their family. Parents play a big part in a teen’s decision to drink and if a teen’s parents use alcohol, their child may want to do so as well so that they can be like their mom or dad (Nielsen 54). A young teenager might think that if they drink they would be more mature, and they may do it to feel older or to be like someone older (Claypool 53). If the parents of the teen aren’t responsible or if they just don’t care if their child drinks, they may even give their child alcohol, and this can start that teen on drinking alcohol (Nielsen 54).

     It is easy to see that there are many causes of teenage drinking, but there are far more problems caused by drinking than reasons a teen could give as to why he or she drinks. Antonia Novello, former Surgeon General of the United States, had to say this about teen drinking: ”The use of alcohol by young people can lead to serious health consequences far beyond those well known about drinking and driving-the likes of absenteeism, vandalism, date rape, truancy, theft and random violence, to name a few (Pringle 77).” The many problems caused by teenage drinking are not just limited to physical problems the teen might have due to drinking alcohol but there also many emotional, mental, and social problems caused by teenage drinking.

     Teenage drinking can cause many health problems. There are many diseases and disorders that can be linked to drinking. Alcohol can cause many diseases such as cirrhosis, which is caused by alcohol burning the liver and scaring it (Clayton 31). Eventually, this scaring will lead the liver to stop functioning, killing the person who has this disease (31). When someone has cirrhosis the can’t break down alcohol and toxins, and if the person continues to drink alcohol it can get so bad that they can’t break down toxins from everyday food and they’ll eventually die (Pringle 20).

     Cirrhosis isn’t the only condition caused by alcohol. Alcohol can also cause a person to get the delirium tremens, which causes the person to shake and hallucinate, and this condition can also be fatal (Clayton 32). “Wet brains” is another condition in which an alcoholic can’t think clearly and can’t take care of himself (Claypool 83). He or she must then be permanently institutionalized (83). The health risks due to alcohol are not just limited to diseases. They can also cause other health risks in general. “Since alcohol is a poison, or toxin, it stimulates the heart to beat more rapidly in an effort to get rid of the poison. This increases blood pressure. Drinking several ounces of alcohol a day can cause constant high blood pressure (hypertension). This stress on the heart can lead to heart failure (Pringle 19).”

     Alcohol can cause many problems other than health problems. It can cause many mental and psychological problems. According to Dr. John Wallace, Medical Director of Edgehill Newport Clinic, the destruction of brain cells due to alcoholism unables the brain from thinking clearly (Clayton 34). Another problem caused by teen drinking involves risky behavior (Mitchell 47). A teen that has drunk alcohol is more likely to engage in risky behavior, such as sexual activity, than someone who is sober (Mitchell 47).

     Out of the many problems caused by teen drinking the biggest one is probably drunk driving (40). Teenagers are twice as likely to be involved in alcohol related car accidents than adults over 30 years of age (Landau 27). It estimated that 41 percent of fatal car accidents in 1995 were in some way connected with alcohol (Mitchell 40). Also, in 1995 there were 17,274 deaths due to alcohol related car accidents (Claypool 37). “Drunk driving is the number one killer of people aged 15 to 24 (37).”
There are many ways to treat the problem of teen alcoholism and to prevent this problem from happening to teens at all. According to Derek Miller, a professor of adolescent psychiatry at Northwestern University, parents who set a good example for their children is a good way to prevent their children from abusing alcohol (Monroe 90). He says that children tend to mimic their parents, and if the parents don’t drink, their children probably wont either (90). Others say that knowledge is the key to help teens with drinking problems (Pringle 98). They say that learning the truth will help teens with their problems (98).

Many teens are not able to stop on their own so they need someone to help them. Because teens need someone to help them, there have been many self-help programs and organizations set up to help. For many teens self-help programs like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) might be the best way to get help (Landau 77). In Alcoholics Anonymous, people help each other with their drinking problems by offering each other support and advice (Pringle 101). In addition to Alcoholics Anonymous, many churches and synagogues may have self-help groups to help people with their alcoholism problems (Clayton 49). At many alcohol treatment groups they ask you to take a simple test to see if you have a problem with alcohol (Luks 147). They ask you not to drink when everyone else is drinking and then to see if you feel comfortable like that (147).

Also, today we are seeing more programs like Student Assistance Programs where schools get involved and help teens with their alcohol problems (Landau 74). Schools are trying to help in anyway they can now. In fact there is a new program in Minnesota called Sobriety High, where young teen alcoholics can recover and get help with others of their same age (Mitchell 68). Sobriety High is a 6-year high school (69). The students there et no homework but they still get the same amount of education as all other public high school students (69).

Hopefully, by using these alcohol treatment programs and all other means to help stop teenagers from drinking we will cut down on the problem of underage drinking and prevent many problems that may occur due to underage drinking. Maybe by stopping the problem of teen drinking, we will stop other problems such as crime as well. For example, in California it was proven that an increase of alcoholism treatment results in a decrease in crime (Mitchell 72). In the past few years the problem of teen drinking has started to decrease, but we need to make sure it continues to do so in the future.

Return to 123HelpMe.com