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Find Out More, Do More How Parents Can Prevent Their Teen from Underage Drinking.

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Presentation on theme: "Find Out More, Do More How Parents Can Prevent Their Teen from Underage Drinking."— Presentation transcript:

1 Find Out More, Do More How Parents Can Prevent Their Teen from Underage Drinking

2 Is Underage Drinking An Issue Here? Parents know it is, but many Maine parents DON’T think their child is at risk “I would know” But their teens tell a different story

3 Teens report alcohol use that is far above what their parents recognize

4 Used Alcohol in the Past 30 Days

5 Teen self-reports of binge drinking (five or more drinks in one setting) …demonstrates that many adults are clearly in the dark!

6 Binge Drinking in the Past 2 Weeks

7 It’s not just about drinking and driving, either… 2/3 of alcohol-related teenage deaths are NOT from drinking & driving Suicide Homicide Accidental Injury (burns, falls, drowning) Alcohol Poisoning

8 Other Risks Related to Teen Drinking Academic failure and dropping out of school Risky sexual behavior and unintended pregnancies Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as genital herpes and AIDS Sexual assault, physical assault, robbery, burglary, vandalism and other crimes Depression

9 One emerging risk is what alcohol can do to a developing brain Here are some important findings: Damage from alcohol use in teens can be long-term and irreversible Even minor alcohol use decreases verbal ability in teens by as much as 10%

10 More important findings: Adolescents’ learning and memory centers of the brain are twice as vulnerable to alcohol as adults Alcohol effects memory, verbal skills & vocabulary, which can impact performance in school and lower scores on aptitude tests

11 What can we do as parents?

12 Understand and believe that ALL Maine teens are at risk - it’s not just somebody else’s children Continue to talk with your teens, but don’t assume that’s enough

13 Find out More, Do More to keep your teen from underage alcohol use

14 Five Monitoring Tips Can Help

15 Tip #1 Limit Access Good! If you have alcohol in your home: Keep track of the quantity Know where it is Make it less accessible to teens

16 Tip #1 Limit Access Better! Thank servers and clerks for ‘carding’ those who are buying alcohol

17 Tip #1 Limit Access Best! Alert the police if you have information about where teens are buying/getting alcohol

18 Tip #2 Network Good! Get to know your teen’s friends

19 Tip #2 Network Better! Get to know the parents of your teen’s friends Know their rules, and share your rules Don’t accept the argument: “everybody else gets to…”

20 Tip #2 Network Best! Let the parents of your teen’s friends know where you stand on underage drinking No furnishing, EVER!

21 Tip #3 Reinforce and Enforce Good! Reinforce the rules and consequences of underage drinking before your teen goes out

22 Tip #3 Reinforce and Enforce Better! Frequently explain the reasons behind your rules Reinforce that the rules are protective, not just restrictive

23 Tip #3 Reinforce and Enforce Best! Consistently enforce the rules – even when it’s hard Don’t look the other way if your teen violates the rules Let them know that you will hold them accountable

24 Tip #4 Check In Often – Good! Before your teen goes to a party or out with friends ask: Will adults be present the entire time? Will alcohol be present?

25 Tip #4 Check In Often Better! Ask your teen to call you from the party or gathering If you have caller ID you can ask them to call from a landline, not from a cell phone, so that you can tell exactly where they are

26 Tip #4 Check In Often Best! Trust but Verify! Check in often with other parents about your teen’s activities Consider ‘dropping in’ at the location your teen tells you they will be

27 Tip #5 Be Up & Be Ready Good! Wait up (or set the alarm for curfew time) Talk with your teen about their night

28 Tip #5 Be Up & Be Ready Better! When your teen arrives home, look for signs of use. Teens who believe their parents will catch them are less likely to drink

29 Tip #5 Be Up & Be Ready Best! Be prepared in advance for what you would do the first time you discover your teen has been drinking Think about how you would react, whom you would talk to and how you will enforce the consequences.

30 Remember… Start early, don’t wait for signs that your child may be drinking to start monitoring Begin good monitoring skills when your child is young, it will help your monitoring seem less like an “absence of trust” and more like an expected routine as they get older.

31 Remember… You don’t need to go it alone – talk with other parents. The more we work together to give our teens clear and consistent messages, the better! Go to for additional help and resources.


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