Teenage alcohol addiction has become a serious problem that occurs across the United States. Teens experiment with alcohol for a wide variety of reasons. Some parents unknowingly introduce alcohol to their children by keeping it stored in the home. Other families may have customs that allow for the use of alcohol. The friends of some teens coerce them into trying alcohol. Other reasons for the development of alcohol addictions and habits include depression, stress, earlier trauma and major life changes. The following statistics point to the growing problem of teen alcohol addiction in the United States:
- Ten million teens in the United States have used alcohol in the past 30 days.
- Troubled teens tend to ingest more alcohol as they get older according to a recent national survey.
- Approximately 50 percent of teens engage in binge drinking.
- More than 70 percent of teens have drank before the age of 18.
- About 14 percent of teens have been intoxicated during the past year.
Signs of a Teen Who is Drinking
A teenager who has a problem or addiction to alcohol may express the problem by showing several signs and symptoms. The most obvious sign that your child is using alcohol is the smell. Alcohol drains from the pores 24 hours after the person ingests it. Therefore, you would be able to smell the alcohol on the child’s breath if he or she was using. Additional symptoms may include a moody demeanor, failure to complete daily tasks, oversleeping, disappearing, monetary losses and depression. Shifts in mood are a key indication to a problem with alcohol usage. Once you have a good idea that your child is using alcohol, you can take some steps to help him or her.
Approach the Teen About Drinking
The first step toward recovery is approaching the teen with the problem. You must ask the child bluntly about the use of alcohol. At this point, the child will most likely lie. Your tone has to be loving and accepting for the child to drop his or her defenses and discuss alcohol abuse. No teen wants his or her parent to be disappointed. Therefore, you must approach the situation delicately. Try to keep a calm head and not force the teen’s defense mechanisms to engage.
Educate the Teen About Teenage Alcohol Addiction
Before a teenager can learn how to get sober, he or she needs to understand the risks associated with extensive alcohol consumption. Sometimes teenagers get the wrong idea about alcohol because of the way certain sectors of the media portray it. They might also believe that excessive use is acceptable from their peer’s beliefs. Showing the teenager statistics and speaking with him or her about unfortunate incidents that have occurred because of teenage alcohol addiction will increase the child’s awareness. Newspapers, internet stories and brochures are perfect training instruments.
Get the Teen Committed to Change
If the teenager admits the problem willfully and accepts that he or she needs help, the next step is convincing him or her that change is necessary. The best way to tackle teenage alcohol addiction is to have them enter treatment as quickly as possible. The sooner the addictive cycle is broken, the better the teen has to achieve positive personal transformation.
Find a Reputable Alcohol Recovery Center
Finally, once the teen agrees to get help, you can start looking for a reputable facility. Alcohol rehabilitation facilities can provide a healthy amount of services that can better the quality of the teen’s life. Such services include detoxification, which is the first step in the recovery process. Alcohol detoxification may take as long as two weeks, depending on the severity of the problem.
Next, the teen will receive additional services such as individualized counseling and group therapy to fortify him or her for the future. The goal is to supply the teenager with healthy life coping mechanisms so that he or she will remain sober after the treatment.
Learning how to get sober is only a phone call away. Teenage alcohol addiction is a very serious problem. A parent who wants to help a teen who is drinking should call a facility as quickly as possible.