You may have already spoken to your child about alcohol, but there could be more you can say to prevent them from drinking underage. For instance, did you know that research has shown children who start to drink by age 13 are more likely to go on to have worse grades or to skip school?(1) Or, did you know that compared to non-drinkers, underage drinkers are more likely to smoke tobacco or use cannabis.(2)
As a parent it’s important to understand not only the risks associated with underage drinking, but also why children drink alcohol, so you can influence your child to make sensible choices. Just as you would talk to your children about other concerns such as bullying or smoking, it is worth finding out all the facts on children and alcohol to help you have the best conversation with them about drinking underage.
There are some great materials on the Drinkaware website www.drinkaware.co.uk/underagedrinking to help you have these conversations. You can find medically approved information, tools, video resources, facts and guides.
Keep the conversation going by visiting: www.drinkaware.co.uk/underagedrinking
1 Ellickson et al (2003). Ten Year Prospective Study of Public Health Problems Associated with Early Drinking. Pediatrics 111;949: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/111/5/949.full.html
2 Best et al (2001). Drinking and smoking as concurrent predictors of illicit drug use and positive drug attitudes in adolescents. Drug and Alcohol Dependence 60 (2000). 319–321. Downloaded from:
CNI Network's Alcohol and Safety Education Resource is available at www.sa-cni.org.uk/alcohol--safety-education