The Necessity Of Health Education Essay

2143 words - 9 pages

Health education is one of the most controversial subjects taught in schools throughout the United States. Many people argue that the topics discussed in health classes do not have appropriate content for middle school and high school students to be learning. Despite the controversy surrounding these topics, health education is still an extremely important aspect of the middle school and high school curricula. Children are being exposed to alcohol, tobacco, and various drugs at earlier ages than ever before. Health education is the best vehicle to inform students of the dangers and consequences that are associated with these substances. Health education also allows students to become aware of the changes that will affect their minds and bodies as they continue to mature.
Alcohol is, unfortunately, one of the most easily obtainable and most dangerous substances on the market. Although the legal purchasing and consuming age for alcoholic products is twenty-one, that does not stop younger people from abusing it. Not only is this illegal, but also quite dangerous. A common misconception about alcohol for children is that the legal, mental, and physical consequences of using alcohol “end” once a person becomes of the legal drinking age. The truth of the matter is that the dangers of alcohol consumption extend far beyond the age of twenty-one and into adulthood. Alcohol can have devastating effects for people of all ages. “Alcohol causes the most severe and widespread adverse health consequences of all drugs of abuse, affecting virtually every organ system. Fortunately, many of these require many years of drinking so they are not commonly found in adolescents” (Milhorn). Not only can alcohol destroy the life of the consumer, but can also destroy the lives of innocent people via the consumer. For example, a drunk driver can kill people in an instant by causing a car accident. Also, the actions of someone who has consumed alcohol can strain personal relationships. Alcohol can cause several diseases and damage to internal organs, including the liver, the pancreas, the heart, and the brain. Cirrhosis, or scarring of the liver, is a very common result of drinking. Other physical damages include pancreatitis, hypertension, osteoporosis, and certain cancers. Alcohol also obviously impairs the mind. People who are under the influence of alcohol do not have the mental ability to make sound judgments or decisions. This is why alcohol induced accidents are so common. A person under the influence of alcohol may not realize that they are too intoxicated to operate a car, therefore putting countless lives at risk. Another dangerous aspect of alcohol is that it is addictive. People who drink alcohol often are subject to alcoholism. Drinking alcohol is socially acceptable, which makes it easier for an addiction to develop. Alcohol releases dopamine, which produces a sense of satisfaction, and endorphins, which kill pain. These combined feelings produce a “high”...

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