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Health consequences

Do you experience pressure from kids your age to drink alcohol? Maybe you have already tried alcohol and are now struggling with if it was the right decision. Maybe you are a teen that likes to drink because you think it helps you fit in or allows you to be surrounded by your friends more. Whatever the case, there is something you should know. When you make choices in your life, you should have all the facts and there are plenty of facts about the damage alcohol to your body to make you think twice about underage drinking.

Health consequences of underage drinking
  • Underage drinkers are 22 times more likely to use marijuana, 50 times more likely to use cocaine and five times more likely to become alcoholics. (SAMHSA, 2006)

  • Your brain doesn’t fully develop until you’re mid 20’s and drinking alcohol during this development phase can cause irreversible damage to your memory skills, verbal skills and ability to learn. (American Medical Association, 2003)

  • Drinking alcohol can mess with your hormones, which can prevent normal development of organs, muscles, bones and the reproductive system. (National Institute of Alcohol Abuse & Alcoholism, Alcohol Alert, 2006)

  • Alcohol tricks the brain's pleasure-reward system by stimulating the production of dopamine. Because your brain produces an abundance of dopamine (more than adults), you can rapidly go from trying alcohol to liking it; craving it, to needing it. This can create a quicker path to alcoholism. (Journal of Substance Abuse, 1997)

  • Because your brain has not fully developed the same internal “cut-off” switch, which causes adults to fall asleep or pass-out when they drink too much alcohol, you are at greater risk for alcohol poisoning. Alcohol poisoning can cause difficulty breathing, unconsciousness and death.


Statistics you should know
How to help a friend

Staying true to you

DUI laws

Underage drinking laws

Risks of underage drinking

Health consequences

Athletes

Is supported in whole or part, by federal or state funds received from Region 1 Behavioral Health Authority, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Division of Behavioral Health and Tobacco Free Nebraska Program as a result of the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).


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