Contrary to popular belief, depression and anxiety do not play a role in increased alcohol use among teens, but aggressive behavior does, according to a report published by Science Daily.
Citing results from a study conducted by the University of Finland, the report revealed that teens who exhibit aggressive behavior are more inclined to drink and become heavy drinkers than other teens.
It also highlighted that depression and anxiety, as most people would assume, do not increase alcohol use among teenagers.
However, parental divorce, which is a common cause of depression among teens, is linked to alcohol use in adolescent girls.
Early occurrence of menarche, or a girl’s first menstrual bleeding, was also linked to alcohol use in girls.
Aggressive behavior was found to be more common among teenage females than males, the report revealed.
The findings, which were published in the Journal of Adolescence, point out the possibility of increased alcohol use among teens due to “smoking and attention problems.”
The report said that 60 percent of teens claimed to drink alcohol. Out of this number, over 50 percent were aged 15.
No significant differences between alcohol consumption of teenage boys and girls were reported.
The percentage of teens engaging in alcohol use did not increase throughout the years. It was found however that most teens drink unsafe levels of alcohol.
The study examined the link between behavioral and social problem and alcohol use among 4,074 Finnish teens aged 13 to 18.
Underage drinking among teens has also reached epidemic levels in the United States and continues to be a growing concern for the American public.
Data from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) showed that 10.4 million people between the age of 12 and 20 “drank more than just a few sips of alcohol” in 2009.
NIAAA also said that as these drinkers age, they tend to drink more.
“By age 15, half of teens have had at least one drink. By age 18, more than 70% of teens have had at least one drink,” NIAAA said.
Young adults were also found to consume five drinks on a single occasion, which, based on CDC’s benchmark, qualifies as binge drinking.
The cause of drinking among U.S. teens are due to a wide gamut of factors including early exposure to drinking, alcoholic parents, parental divorce, peer pressure and tendency to engage in risky behavior.
But further alcohol use tends to create a ripple effect and compound the negative repercussions of these factors.
For example, teens who drink heavily are more likely to engage in violence, drunk driving, “or carry out or be the victim of a physical or sexual assault,” according to NIAAA.
Teens before age 21 who drink are also vulnerable to learning problems and having irreversible “alcohol-induced brain damage.”
Teens struggling with alcohol abuse or alcohol use disorders need to be treated immediately to prevent any further damage to their brain and emotional health. Treatment modalities like naltrexone and life coaching are available for teens to make sure that their needs are addressed as they move past their history of alcohol abuse.
BioCorRx, Inc. (OTCQB: BICX) is a company whose innovative rehabilitation program, called the Start Fresh Program, uses a biodegradable implant formulation of naltrexone which can significantly reduce physical cravings for alcohol coupled with one on one coaching to help alcoholics plan for a future free from substance abuse. Availability of their program is rapidly expanding across the United States.
Data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) revealed that nearly 200,000 teens are treated for alcohol or other substance abuse disorders annually.