Parents who think introducing their child to drinking early in their teens may help them inculcate understanding of responsible drinking, should think again. According to a latest study, your attempt to keep your child off from engaging in heavy drinking may instead lead them to addiction.
Adolescents' alcohol consumption is one of the leading factor for death and disability in teenagers globally. While steps must be taken to make them understand mature and responsible drinking, introducing them to alcohol so early may not be the way out. It may in fact only lead to early development of alcohol-use disorders. There were no benefits or protective effects found in giving teenagers alcohol when compared with teenagers who were not given alcohol, the researchers pointed.
Researchers noted that the act may encourage increased likelihood of teenagers accessing alcohol through other sources, compared with teenagers not given any alcohol. The findings revealed that teenagers supplied with alcohol by only their parents for one year were twice as likely to access alcohol from other sources the next year.
For the study, published in The Lancet Public Health journal, researchers examined the teenagers from secondary schools and their parents between 2010 and 2011. The teenagers and their parents were given separate questionnaires every year from 2010 to 2016 including information about how teenagers accessed alcohol, binge-drinking levels, experience of alcohol-related harm and alcohol-abuse symptoms.
About 1,927 teenagers aged 12 to 18 and their parents in a six-year study revealed that alcohol supplied by parents does not mitigate risk of its supply by other people. And that parental supervision was not much of a help either in helping teenagers to deal with alcohol responsibly.