The Problem Of Teen Alcoholism In The United States

3904 words - 16 pages

Teen alcoholism is a problem that has been plaguing the United States for many decades now. The legal age for alcohol consumption is twenty-one years old in every state of the United States, but this law is commonly broken. The fact that it has not been strictly enforced caused an outbreak of alcohol consumption between minors all over, and because of this, we have been accepting teenage drinking more than ever. The problem lies in the lack of law enforcement, the acceptance by parents and guardians, and the overall attitude of teenagers themselves. Although there are many ways to attempt to treat alcoholism, we find few solutions to be effective (Underage Drinking, 2012).
Alcoholism is defined as a disorder characterized by the excessive consumption of and dependence on alcoholic beverages, leading to physical and psychological harm and impaired social and vocational functioning. Alcohol is a huge problem in high school and in college. Twenty-one may be the legal drinking age, but some how minors find a way to get a hold of alcohol. People as young as fifteen are able to get their hands on an alcoholic beverage. Alcohol is said to be the chosen drug among high school and college students. Underage drinkers have a tendency to drink more then the general population. It is said that high school students spend approximately $4.2 billion annually on alcohol. This money is spent on 430 gallons of alcoholic beverages, and 4 million cans of beer. The type of school, location, the ethnic and gender makeup plays a role in the amount of drinking that occurs among students (Peterson, 2003).
Studies show that students drink more when they are in a group, which speaks to peer influences. When it comes to drinking at parties there is no legal age so to speak. When someone goes to a party they don't get carded, they get a cup. Studies show that students between the ages of 16-21 drink more then those that are over 21. Statistics show that the younger the person the more he or she drinks. Forty one percent of students report to binge drinking, and nearly four percent drink daily. Binge drinking is defined as four drinks for a women in one sitting, and five drinks for a male in one sitting. Students that binge drink have even more problems then students who don't. Binge drinkers are more likely to have hangovers and engage themselves in unplanned sexual activity. There are endless consequences that come with drinking. A range of problems occur due to alcohol consumption. The most popular problem that occurs with drinking is academic problems, others include things such as trauma, date rape, recklessness, vandalism and pregnancy in women. In a recent study 56,000 students reported a slip in their grades. Students went from an A to D's and F's, their GPA's dropped which will effects their future career plans as well as any scholarships they are receiving or attempting to receive (MADD[a], 2015).
Alcoholism is the most common drug abuse problem...

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