New Link Between Early Teen Drinking and Alcoholism

Print More

Kids who begin drinking at 14 or younger are nearly twice as likely to be dependent on alcohol as those who begin drinking between 15 and 17.

They are six times more likely to become alcoholics than people who wait until the legal age of 21 to start drinking, according to a new report from the Center for Substance Abuse Research.

These findings come from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The report goes on to suggest that alcohol education and prevention efforts start as early as middle school.

JJIE.org reports today on the issue of alcoholic energy drinks, sometimes called 'cocaine in a can.'  The companies that make these drinks often target teens in their advertising. Many adults are unaware their kids are consuming alcoholic energy drinks in flavors like “orange” and “fruit punch” and with packaging that looks similar to the regular energy drinks.

One thought on “New Link Between Early Teen Drinking and Alcoholism

  1. This information is very interesting and presents a good counter-argument to the recommendations of policy-makers who want to LOWER the legal drinking age to 18. Clearly, the evidence shows that the prevalence of alcohol dependence and abuse declines as the onset of drinking age rises. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.