Pool parties, vacations and sleepovers … they all come with the arrival of summer time. Teens are out enjoying free time, but what exactly are they spending time doing? A new report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) sheds light on youth drug use throughout the year.
The SAMHSA report analyzes peak usage for many illicit drugs. The findings show that many adolescents try drugs for the first time during the summer. “On an average day in June and July more than 11,000 adolescents aged 12-17 use alcohol for the first time,” stated the report. Not only were youths trying alcohol for the first time, but alcohol was also reportedly the most commonly involved illicit drug for emergency department visits made by patients 20 and younger in 2010. Click here to read more
Summer is a great time for a reminder of the importance for mobilizing citizen action to reduce underage and youth binge drinking, by advancing strategic enforcement, policy and education strategies. Cobb Alcohol Taskforce recommends the following tips to keep alcohol and other drugs, out of youths’ hands:
- Join Cobb Safe Neighborhoods Safe Homes Campaign
- Provide a consistent family policy Ex: no teen drinking and set consequences you will carry out
- Monitor your child’s activities
- Refuse to supply alcohol to underage youth in your home or on your property
- Support local law enforcement efforts to enforce alcohol laws