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Teen Alcohol Abuse Linked to Marketing

Addiction and Honesty - the Bergand Group

Teen alcohol abuse is prevalent in our culture and this is largely due to teens’ ability to be heavily influenced by the world around them. Whether teens are influenced by what their friends and family are doing, or are familiar with the many alcohol ads being shown on television, teen alcohol abuse is an epidemic that needs to be discussed. “In 2013, 66.2 percent of U.S. high school students reported trying alcohol, 34.9 percent reported alcohol use in the past 30 days and 20.8 percent reported recent binge drinking.” Aside from making bad decisions while under the influence, such as engaging in sexual activities and using illegal drugs, teen alcohol abuse affects their moods, grades, and overall well-being. Linked to the rise in teen alcohol abuse, alcohol advertising influences teens.

Dr. James D. Sargent, a CHaD pediatrician writes, “Our study found that familiarity with and response to images of television alcohol marketing was associated with the subsequent onset of drinking across a range of outcomes.” Teens are very familiar with the branding of popular alcohol brands and regularly see these ads running on TV. Teen alcohol abuse has more to do with advertising than we thought. “Current self-regulatory standards for televised alcohol advertising appear to inadequately protect underage youth from exposure to televised alcohol advertising and its probable effect on behavior.”

What Can Parents Do to Prevent Teen Alcohol Abuse?

  • Discuss teen alcohol abuse. Parents need to discuss teen alcohol abuse with their children and set good examples. When parents openly discuss teen alcohol abuse, children aren’t naive about the negative effects of alcohol.
  • Set an example. Parents must set a good example for their children to prevent teen alcohol abuse. If a child sees their parents using alcohol irresponsibly, they have a higher chance of teen alcohol abuse themselves.
  • Take action when teen alcohol abuse is suspect. If a parent suspects their teen is abusing alcohol it is dire they talk to their child. Catching teen alcohol abuse in the beginning is much easier than having an intervention after things have gotten worse.

Sargent states, “You can’t control all of your kids’ decisions, but you can help them to make good choices in situations where alcohol is available. You want kids to think about and reflect upon the pros and cons of drinking based on your previous discussions.”

If you suspect your teen is using drugs or alcohol, The Bergand Group can help. Serving the Baltimore area, The Bergand Group provides care for those going through drug and alcohol addictions. Teen alcohol abuse can be treated in a loving and safe way. For more information on programs to help end teen alcohol abuse, such as family therapy and individual therapy, visit The Bergand Group today.

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About The Bergand Group:

At The Bergand Group in Baltimore, MD our therapists have more than twenty years of experience in the mental health and addiction fields. Our focus is on providing comprehensive mental health care and appropriate care for addictive disorders. We offer both alcohol rehabilitation and drug rehabilitation. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or substance addiction, there is help available. We also offer several other services, including family therapy and counseling. We can help. Contact us today.
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