Dangers of Drinking
- Alcohol is the number one drug of choice for teenagers.
- Alcohol-related car crashes are the number one killer of teenagers
in the United States.
- Alcohol is the number one drug problem in America.
If you think it can't happen to you, look around. Check your
school's yearbooks for the last ten years. How many were dedicated
to a student who was killed in a drunk driving crash?
Ask your friends how many people they know who have had bad things
happen to them when they or someone else was drinking.
You don't even have to be the one doing the drinking — most
teenage passenger deaths are the result of crashes caused by alcohol-impaired
teenage drivers. No matter what the situation, drinking alcohol
under the age of 21 is illegal.
How Does Alcohol Affect You?
- You see double, slur your speech, you lose your sense of distance.
- Alcohol loosens your inhibitions; you make bad judgments that
can result in car crashes, violence, unwanted pregnancy, sexual
transmission of diseases, or rape.
- A significant portion of violent crimes and vandalism among
and by youth involve use of alcohol.
- Using alcohol can cost you your freedom. You can be grounded
by parents, lose your driver's license, or end up in jail.
- You can get sick or die from alcohol poisoning.
- Poor grades may be a result of increased use of alcohol.
Be Smart About Advertising
Take a good look at how the alcohol industry tries to convince
people to use its products.
- Wine coolers are displayed in stores next to fruit drinks.
Maybe they don't think you'll notice the difference
between a regular fruit drink and one with alcohol.
- Different brands of beer and other alcoholic beverages are slipped
into the movies you watch. They think if you see your favorite
actor drinking it, you will too.
- The models on the beer commercials are always young, fit, and
beautiful. But alcohol has plenty of calories and little nutritional
value. Drinking it will not make you fitter or more attractive.
- Advertisements feature celebrities and sports figures, but
drinking will not make you famous or athletic.
- Alcohol advertisers are now reminding people not to drink and
drive. But drunk driving is not the only way alcohol can mess
up your life.
- Advertisers hope you won't stop and think when you see
their ads. Don't be conned. Use your own judgment, not theirs,
and learn the facts.
More Facts About Alcohol
- The earlier young people start drinking and using drugs, the
more likely they are to become addicted.
- Drinking coffee, taking a cold shower, exercising, or breathing
fresh air will not sober you up. The only thing that sobers you
up is time — at least several hours.
- One beer, one shot of whiskey, and one glass of wine all have
the same amount of alcohol. Don't fall for the myth that
beer and wine are less intoxicating than hard liquor.
- Only 3 to 5 percent of alcoholics are what we think of as bums.
Most alcoholics are just like people you know. Anyone can become
an alcoholic — young, old, rich, poor, single, married, employed,
- Drinking alcohol does not quench your thirst; it causes dehydration.
- Alcohol interferes with your central nervous system. You lose
balance, coordination, and judgment.
- Alcohol ages and damages the brain.
- Alcoholism is hereditary.
- Eight young people a day die in alcohol related crashes.
- Teens who drink alcohol are 7.5 times more likely to use any
illicit drug, and 50 times more likely to use cocaine than young
people who never drink alcohol.
- You are breaking the law by buying or using alcohol before
you are 21 years old.
- Make a pledge with your friends that you will help each other
avoid alcohol and other drugs. Leave parties where kids are drinking.
- If a friend, or someone you know, has passed out from drinking
too much alcohol, turn the person on his or her side and call
911 or your local emergency number for help. Too much alcohol
can cause the central nervous system, which controls breathing,
to shut down. Death can result.
- Don't ride with someone who has been drinking. Call a
taxi, your parents, or another relative or friend for a ride.
- Encourage someone you think has a drinking problem to get help.
Go with them to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings or to meet with
- Suggest that members of any club or youth group you belong
to organize an anti-drinking project — an alcohol-free post-prom,
graduation, or New Year's Eve party.
- Make a presentation to your school's PTA meeting about
how teachers and parents can realistically help kids avoid drugs
- Ask for help if someone is pressuring you to try alcohol or
other drugs. Talk to someone you trust.
Return to Crime Prevention Tips
Crime Prevention Tips Provided by:
National Crime Prevention Council