Educating the Youth about Alcoholism and AddictionApril 2015
April is Alcohol Awareness month and in observance of its 29th year, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc. (NCADD) came up with the theme "For the Health of It: Early Education on Alcoholism and Addiction". This year's celebration is all about helping the youth understand the repercussions of alcoholism and to encourage individuals to get help for alcohol-related problems. Alcoholism health.
According to NCADD, underage drinking is directly correlated with "traffic fatalities, violence, suicide, educational failure, alcohol overdose, unsafe sex and other problem behaviors, even for those who may never develop a dependence or addiction."
The 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that among high school students 35 percent drank some amount of alcohol, 21 percent binge drank, 10 percent drove after drinking alcohol, and 22 percent rode with a driver who had been drinking alcohol.
Here are some ways for parents, guardians, and educators can reach out to young adults and young children regarding alcohol problems:
1. Make the effort to talk with teens and young children and explain to them that alcohol will never be an alternative to good conversation skills especially at social gatherings. Alcohol is something to be had in moderation. Moreover, there are age restrictions in most territories that seek to protect young ones and not necessarily to deprive them. Also, it can be useful to introduce older teenagers to the intake restrictions in your country so that they will be aware of their limits.
2. Help them understand that alcohol should not be used as an emotional crutch. Drinking should never be used as a way to overcome intense feelings of unhappiness. Instead, introduce them to better ways of getting over negativity such as physical activities (sports and exercise) and building their confidence as a person early on.
3. Help them see that alcoholism limits a person's ability to lead a normal and healthy life. Explain to them that alcohol abuse is a barrier to enjoying the fruits of their existence
4. For older children like teenagers, opt to give them statistics related to alcohol abuse including deaths and injuries. Allow them to understand that these numbers are not meant to scare them but rather to help them put things into perspective--that lives are actually lost of people cannot control their alcohol intake.
5. Lead by example. As parents, guardians, or educators, it is important for you to practice what you preach. Remember that your own attitude towards alcohol and its abuse will have an impact on youngsters.