The consequences of teen drinking combined with the dangers of teen drinking mean a little summer fun or a winter beach vacation can become a chilling disaster. Teenagers are careless by nature and not aware of the risks. Indeed, on the beach, the consequences of teen drinking tend to be ignored.
Why are the dangers of teen drinking ignored? Is it dangerous for teens to be exposed to such attitudes? A clear understanding of the teen brain reveals the consequences of teen drinking. Thus, in an illuminating blog published by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), Dr. George Koob, the renowned Director of the NIAAA, points out the risks when poor decision making is combined with teens drinking.
Scary Teen Drinking Statistics = A Red Flag
In the powerful article, Dr. George Koob highlights the risks of teen excessive drinking and binge drinking. The CDC reported that in 2010 underage excessive drinking was the cause of over 4,300 deaths and in 2013 there were at least 119,000 visits to emergency rooms by youths under 21 for alcohol-related issues. Since teens lose their inhibitions while on vacation, either during the summer, or on a winter trip or spring break to warm beaches, their judgment becomes impaired. Without a doubt, impaired judgment and alcohol do not mix well together.
As Dr. George Koob points out, “Alcohol impairs both physical and mental abilities while also decreasing inhibitions—leading to poor decision making. When combined with popular activities like swimming, boating, and traveling, these elements can come together in a ‘perfect summer storm’ and can lead to tragic consequences.”
Dangers of Teen Drinking and Aquatic Sports
Indeed, the alcohol use statistics back up Dr. George Koob —
70 percent of all water recreation deaths of teens involve alcohol
40 percent of people drink alcohol while on a boat
60 percent of boating fatalities and accidents involve alcohol
Given these dangers of teen drinking, we need to ask why teenage drinking opens the door to such deadly risks? To begin with, the problem is the very nature of the beach and aquatic sports. When teens are given the opportunity to drink on the beach, they tend to be on vacation. Vacation time lowers inhibitions and increases risk-taking. Thus, impulsive behavior leads not only to alcohol consumption, but also teenager excessive drinking and binge drinking.
Consequences of Teen Drinking and Teenage Binge Drinking
Dr. George Koob writes, “Avoiding alcoholic beverages while piloting a boat, driving a car, exploring the wilderness, and swimming or surfing is a good place to start.” However, there remains a lingering sense that teens aren’t always listening, or at least a concerned parent can sometimes question this.
Therefore, teens drinking often devolves into teenager excessive drinking and teenage binge drinking. Since both teen excessive drinking and teenage binge drinking raise the level of intoxication, the dangers increase as well. Indeed, playful aquatic sports can become a lethal venture when mixed with excessive alcohol consumption.
Avoid the Consequences of Teen Drinking
The best way to avoid the consequences of the overconsumption of alcohol, thus the dangers of teen drinking, is to follow the guidance of Dr. George Koob and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.
If you are hosting a party or gathering at the beach or near water, there are several proactive safety steps you can take:
- Offer a variety of delicious non-alcoholic drinks
- Provide a variety of healthy foods and snacks
- Let people know about the dangers of drinking and swimming
- If you are an adult, obey the underage drinking laws
- Finally, set a good example by not drinking at the beach
After all, it’s not a party or a carefree summer vacation if it ends in tragedy. Indeed, the consequences of underage drinking and the dangers associated with teen drinking need to be avoided at all costs. As Dr. Koob expresses with heart in his summation, “Think before you drink in order to help ensure that you and your loved ones enjoy many summers to come.”