Reducing Drinking

Reducing Underage Drinking: What Every Parent Can Do

Who is drinking?

  • The median age at which children begin drinking is 15.7 years of age.
  • Forty-eight percent of high school seniors say they consumed alcohol in the last 30 days.

Where do they get alcohol?

  • Teenagers often find someone older to buy it, use fake ID and purchase it themselves, steal it from stores or take it from their own homes.
  • Forty-eight percent of 9th graders obtain alcohol from their parents or another adult.
  • Nearly 84% of tenth graders and 67% of eight graders say alcohol is "fairly easy" or "very easy" to get.

How Parents Can Help

  • Make sure your kids know what you expect regarding underage alcohol use. Set rules with clear consequences. Discuss and agree on them and follow through consistently.
  • Refuse to supply alcohol to underage youth in your home or on your property. Supplying alcohol is an invitation for young people to drink illegally. Teen alcohol use is NOT a rite of passage into adulthood. In fact, alcohol has kept too many teens from becoming adults.
  • Make sure that alcohol is not available at the other events your teen will be attending. Talk to other parents and party hosts to ensure alcohol-free celebrations. Be proactive: if parents stand together on this issue, they will present a united front for teens.
  • Think about where alcohol is kept in your home and how much alcohol you have on hand.
  • Create opportunities and activities in your home so your kids and their friends feel welcome.

Teens are at reduced risk for alcohol problems when they have:

  • A parent(s) or significant adult who is actively involved.
  • Adults who regularly support positive lifestyle choices and activities.
  • A sense of responsibility to others.

Information provided by the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.

Contact Us

Personal Counseling Center
Campus location: Marguerite Hall, 1st FL
Office Hours: Mon-Fri, 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM
Evening Hours by Appointment
Phone: (716) 829-7819

Kim Zittel, LMHC, NCC
Director, Personal Counseling Center
Licensed Mental Health Counselor
National Certified Counselor

Erin M. Moss, MA, LMHC
Licensed Mental Health Counselor

Isabel Molina, APRN BC
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner


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