Adolescent Drug Abuse in America

Adolescent drug abuse is of growing concern in America. Children are experimenting with drugs at very young ages. One of the most common drugs that the youth is abusing is alcohol. Surveys show that children as young as twelve years old have experience drinking. These children report that their adolescent drug abuse was induced by peer pressure from classmates, relatives and curiosity. They claim that alcohol use makes them feel like an adult although they need help purchasing the beverage.

Adolescent drug abuse is of concern because the younger a person is when they first start using the drug, the more likely they are for building tolerances and becoming dependent on the drug. Adolescent drug abuse in particular can effect a young girls menstruation and fertility and young boys sex drive. Also alcohol has other implications on sex because females tend to lower their inhibitions, thus making them vulnerable to unwanted sexual advances. Young men under the influence of alcohol tend to become aggressive. Unwanted pregnancies and date rapes are associated with adolescent drug abuse. The chronic effects of alcoholism are liver cirrhosis, Korsakoff Syndrome and possibly bladder cancer.

One atmosphere that encourages large amounts of adolescent drug abuse is colleges and universities. Alcohol tends to be a college undergraduates drug of choice. They have the highest incidence of alcohol abuse and binge drinking of any age group in The United States. This primarily because sororities and fraternities historically support this type of behavior. Adolescent drug abuse in college is not an indication that one will abuse alcohol or any drug later in life. In fact, most drug addicts and alcoholics are not college graduates.

Adolescent drug abuse has many negative side effects and can promote negative behaviors. Therefore, parents and teachers should educate children early about the risk factors of alcoholism and other drugs.

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