While summer is time for beach, barbecues and boating, on an average day in June or July, more than 11,000 12-17-year-olds start drinking alcohol for the first time (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration). In the Massapequas, youth report having their first drink before the age of fourteen and as they navigate through high school, underage drinking increases dramatically. The Massapequa Takes Action Coalition (MTAC)’s new underage drinking prevention campaign, Alcohol and Teens Don’t Mix: Be Their Guide. Don’t Provide. offers resources to help parents talk with their youth about the consequences and prevention of underage drinking and how it affects their brain, health and safety.
Adolescence is a critical time for youth as the brain is still developing—through the age of 25. Alcohol and drugs can interfere with the natural development of the brain. When children begin using alcohol or drugs before the age of 15, it increases their likelihood of alcohol or drug dependence into adulthood (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
To learn more about the dangers underage drinking has on youth, go to www.mtacoalition.com or like/follow Massapequa Takes Action Coalition on Facebook.