Teenage Alcoholism Essay

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"What is alcohol? Alcohol is many things to many people: To little kids, it is a curiosity. To teenagers, it is "cool". To responsible drinkers, it is a relaxant. To bartenders, it is a job, their lives. To restaurant owners, it is a moneymaker. To probation officers, it is a frustration. To actively drinking alcoholics, it is heaven. To wives and husbands of drinking alcoholics, it is a waste. To recovering alcoholics, it is a painful old friend. To us, it is something to be learned about and controlled. " (Dolmetsch, p.4) The definition of alcoholism stresses the basic elements of (1) chronicity; (2) compulsive, uncontrollable drinking; (3) intoxication; and (4) interruption of normal life functions. (Claypool, p. 91) When the drinker"s work, social life, study habits, mental health, or family and personal relationships are affected, the possibility exists that the drinker may be an alcoholic. If the drinker is able to stop drinking permanently, then he is not considered to be an alcoholic. "For teenagers and adults, alcohol is the most commonly abused drug. It is easy to get, easy to use, and as common in our society as aspirin." (Claypool, p. 62) Millions of American teenagers drink alcohol. Young people drink for many reasons; whether it"s to escape the daily stress of school or family life, or to fit in with their friends. But sadly enough, many teenagers discover too late that drinking cannot solve any of their problems. Teenage drinking is now one of the most serious problems that young people face. (Landau, intro) In 1977, Senator Frank J. Dodd stated: "Alcoholism is one of the greatest health problems in the United States and is one that afflicts individuals in virtually all social and economic categories and varying age groups." (Claypool, pp. 90 -91) From the time children reach the age of 13 ½, 63 percent of the boys and 54 percent of the girls have at least tried their first alcoholic beverage. (Claypool, p. 14) Alcohol use substantially increases each year throughout junior and senior high school. By the twelfth grade, 93 percent of the young men and 87 percent of the young women have at least tried one drink. Thirty percent of these students had five or more drinks in a row within the previous two weeks. (Landau, p.15) The National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism states that: "By the time teenagers reach twelfth grade, more than half of them drink alcohol at least once a week; Nearly half of all teenagers who drink say that they have been drunk at least once – compared to only 19 percent twenty years ago; Five percent admit they get drunk once a week or more often; Thirty-four percent say their drinking habit has created problems with school, friends, or police; The average amount of alcohol a teenage drinker consumes is equivalent to four twelve-ounce cans of beer a week; Beer is the favorite alcoholic beverage of teenagers." More than three million – 19 percent – of the 14-17 year olds in the U.S. are considered problem drinkers. (Claypool, pp. 55-56, 85) The society that we live in today drinks heavily and this influences many teenagers. Most Americans use alcohol to celebrate weddings, toast anniversaries, welcome the New Year, and for many other special events. Despite the fact that serving alcohol to young people is against the law, it is a commonplace event. (Claypool, p.15) When a child becomes a teenager, this means that he is getting older and that he might want to experiment and discover new things. At this age he might try to take risks and explore newfound boundaries. Experimentation to find personal identity is certainly normal during the teen years. Once a child does become a teenager, it seems like he is always being faced with different obstacles such as not being one of the crowd, and with problems at home or with school. They might want to hide their feelings that go along with their problems, and they may feel lonely and depressed. There are many hard decisions to be made like whether to take drugs, or to drink alcohol. While a minor is not allowed to drink by law, he is constantly being encouraged to drink by television, movies, and peer pressure from friends. (Dolmetsch, pp. 20, 22-23) Most people, it seems, drink to take away stress. Dr. William Pendlebury, a neurologist stated in an interview: "In some people alcohol has a chemical effect in the area of the brain that controls feelings. This area is stimulated by the alcohol in those individuals, and by doing that, people"s feelings of well being are increased." (Dolmetsch, p. 9) Even though it is illegal, most teens begin experimenting with alcohol when they are with their friends. The common causes that provoke teens to drink are to socialize, to loosen themselves up, to ease peer pressure, to "feel better", to attract the opposite sex, or to assert their independence. When teens use alcohol, many problems may arise. They may lose their good health, have legal problems – a record, they may cause injuries and death, they may get poor grades in school, and they may become dependent on alcohol for everything. (Spence, p.6) Parental attitudes towards drinking are among the most important factors in how teens drink. Many parents view teen drinking as a normal activity, and as an inevitable part of growing up, since they themselves are drinkers as well. Many first drinks for kids take place in their parent"s homes with parental consent. Few parents encourage their children to get fully intoxicated, but many parents see nothing wrong with their children drinking occasionally. Margaret Bacon and Mary Brush Jones, authors of Teen Age Drinking, state: "Parents who drink are more likely to raise children who also drink, just as parents who abstain are more likely to raise children who also abstain. Of coarse, young people do not always follow their parents" example. But the drinking behavior of parents is more closely related to what their children do about their drinking than any other factor – friends" behavior, living area, religion, and so on. The connection between what parents do and what their sons and daughters do is marked." (Claypool, pp.16, 49-50) Teenagers often find alcoholic beverages available to them at unsupervised parties, and at their friends" homes. Many evade the state minimum-age laws by having an older friend buy the liquor for them, or use false ID"s which are fairly easy to obtain. In instances where it is more difficult to purchase alcohol, young people frequently obtain it by stealing from stores or even from their parent"s household supply. (Landau, p15-16) Alcohol will affect people in many ways. Once swallowed, it is absorbed into the bloodstream and transported throughout the body. How a person responds to alcohol depends on the quantity of alcohol consumed, the amount of food eaten prior to drinking, how quickly the alcohol was ingested, as well as the person"s mood, weight, and prior drinking experience. If combined with other drugs such as tranquilizers, marijuana, prescription drugs, or over the counter drugs, it can cause serious side effects and even death. (Landau, p. 18) Aside from the lungs, liver, kidneys, heart and nervous system, alcohol will affect the brain most severely. Alcohol reaches the brain almost immediately and causes slowed reaction time, loss of concentration, poor judgement, and visual problems. (Spence, p.4) Studies show that a person"s driving ability decreases at a blood alcohol content level of .04%. Driving while intoxicated is against the law in every state. Law enforcement authorities generally determine if a driver is guilty of driving while intoxicated (DWI) by the amount of alcohol in his or her blood alcohol concentration (BAC). (See chart) (Landau, p.27-28). Various civic and community groups were formed to attack the problem of drunk driving. Their aims are to inform teenagers and younger students about alcohol and its effects, and to encourage them to make thoughtful decisions about their behavior. Among these groups is Students Against Drunk Driving (S.A.D.D.). This nationwide student organization is dedicated to educate young people about the negative consequences of drunk driving. The "Contract for life between parent and teenager" distributed by S.A.D.D. is one of groups most valuable lifesaving measures. This agreement, which is signed by both the teenager and parent, ensures that both will not drink and drive nor ride with someone who does. (See contract) In addition to the S.A.D.D. organization are the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (M.A.D.D.) and Teen Saferides. (Landau, pp. 31-33) When people become drunk, they may believe that some remedies for sobering up may include: drinking black coffee, exercising, taking a cold shower, or getting fresh air. But the only true cure is time. A person"s BAC drops about .015% per hour. As long as that person does not drink any more alcohol, the effects wear off at a continual rate. With a BAC of .10%, it takes at least three hours to reach a BAC of .05%, and even longer for the entire amount of alcohol to be eliminated from the body. (Spence, p.7) There are now many new groups that have started to help alcoholics recover from this "disease" of alcoholism. Alcoholics Anonymous meetings are there to help alcoholics go through the recovery process. They must be able to realize themselves that they have a problem. Although it takes a lot of time as well as patience to fully recover from alcohlism, they will eventually be able to pull through successfully. (Dolmetsch, pp. 88, 115) Alcoholism among teenagers in the United States is becoming more widespread than ever before. Current statistics present an unpleasant picture of teenage alcohol use rising every year. Alcohol use leads to teens having problems with school, family, or even with authorities. They may drink to escape these problems, or even to fit in with their friends. This problem of teenage drinking is now one of the most serious problems that young people face today, and the only way to stop these statistics from growing, is to educate the teenagers of the risks of drinking alcohol. WORKS CITED Claypool, Jane. Alcohol and You. New York: Franklin Watts, 1988. Landau, Elaine. Teenage Drinking. New Jersey: Enslow Publishers, Inc. 1994. Lang, Alan. Alcohol: Teenage Drinking. New York: Chelsea House, 1992. Dolmetsch, Paul, and Gail Mauricette, ed. Teens Talk About Alcohol and Alcoholism. New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc. 1987. Spence, W.R. Drinking and Driving: Murder on Our Highways. Texas: Health Edco. 1998. Vogler, Roger E. Teenagers and Alcohol: When Saying No Isn"t Enough. Philadelphia: Charles Press, 1992.  

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Alcohol effects on adolescents are not the same as on adults. Characteristic for adolescence is that the young brain under the age of 20 differs from the brain of an adult by its response to the information received. The young brain is created for learning. It is in the stage of establishing real connections between nerve cells. In this drinking age essay we will examine how alcohol can disrupt this function. If you need an academic essay writer, you can find one on our website.

The brain has the property of changing and becoming more resistant to alcohol when its use is repeated. In adolescents, this resistance can be very low, so the alcohol effect is different than in adults. Experiments conducted on animals show that in juveniles alcohol destroys chemical compounds in the brain responsible for training, more sharply than in adult animals. This occurs with minimal doses of alcohol, even after a single dose. If you need professional paper rewriting online on this topic, contact our managers.

Low doses, which did not cause harm to adults, violated the possibility of training in young animals.

Studies conducted on young people aged 20 to 29 years described in many underage drinking essays showed that with the intake of alcoholic drinks, the ability to gain knowledge drastically decreases.Spirits influence the thinking functions of immature people much more than of matures. The intellect of adolescents is vulnerable, high strength of alcohol does not have a calming effect on it, it causes less sleepiness. This means that teens can drink more than adults. Absence of drowsiness does not mean that alcohol does not reduce their physical activity, the ability to assess the situation and does not disrupt the coordination of movements. Wishing to find more essays about it, go to our best essay writing website at once.

The effect of alcohol on a teenager is stronger than on an adult, and may affect the workings of the brain in the future.

A teen is attracted to alcohol not due to its taste, but because of its effect that is a state of intoxication. When they for the first time take alcohol there is a feeling of a rush of strength, a feeling of contentment, the mood rises. When a degree of intoxication is low, there are very few symptoms of alcoholic intoxication, no loss of self-control. A teen develops the conviction that taking spirits is a regular phenomenon in life, but in a fragile organism, alcoholic addiction is formed. On our website you can buy essay paper works on this theme.

Almost every teenage drinking essay claims that the motivation behind this is:

1) alcoholic environment (family, friends and strangers);
2) increased claim to adulthood (alcoholic drink consumption is a symbol of freedom, growing-up, courage);
3) propaganda of intoxicating beverages in the cinema, on television, in advertising publications;
4) examples of friends, the search for companies with mandatory consumption of strong beverages;
5) development, with the impact of the relatives’ guardianship, of absence of will, lack of initiative, frivolity, unpreparedness for the living of outwardly well-off children, who are afraid to overcome obstacles, quickly succumb to bad influences;
6) particularities of the adolescent's character associated with brainy deficiency due to unfavorable pregnancy, delivery and craniocerebral trauma with a delay in bodily and psychological development.

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Hangover syndrome in adolescents develops in 1-3 years after the onset of systematic drunkenness. Specialists distinguish the initial phase of adaptation to spirits, the phase of assimilation of alcoholic behavior stereotypes, the formation of mental addiction and the phase of physical dependence on spirits. Looking for an essay on homework about it, please, visit our site.

In adolescents, intoxicant quickly becomes an essential component of metabolic processes. The result is a hangover syndrome, which is manifested by a pronounced desire to take alcohol, a violation of the cardiovascular system, headaches, deterioration of sleep, a decrease in mood. To know more about drug abuse, read: http://star-writers.com/blog/essay-on-drug-abuse-harm-and-consequences-of-drug-use

In adolescence, there is a leap of physical and mental development.

With an unstable nervous system, and unformed views on the life a teenager under the influence of alcohol becomes susceptible to the impact of negative examples. Early alcoholization creates in the teenager the illusion of activity, emotionality. Drinking alcohol at any dose is considered a pathology in teenagers and in any case leads to alcohol poisoning. The fact of drinking alcohol should be considered as an abuse. An overdose of alcohol in adolescents leads to amnesia due to the damage of nerve cells. If drunkenness in adolescents is repeated, and amnesia is long, it affects the level of intelligence. Adolescents quickly lose the gag reflex, which increases the tolerance to alcohol, forms an attraction to it. The interests and character of the adolescent are changing, the desire for knowledge is falling, the desire to get money for drinking in any way is increased. You can ask ‘check errors in my essay’ and we are here to assist.

The teenager participates in fights, robberies, and because of impunity illegal behavior can be formed, for example, driving while intoxicated that is described in drunk driving essays. The earlier a teenager begins to abuse intoxicant, the harder the disease, the malignant variety may occur. It is characterized by rapid formation of pathological craving for intoxicant, the absence of quantitative control of consumed intoxicant, systematic overdoses and subsequent amnesia. To learn about Native Americans, follow the link: http://star-writers.com/blog/mysterious-indians-as-topic-of-essay-on-native-americans

Outcomes of alcohol use

The consequences of regular intake of alcohol by teens can be much more serious and dangerous than alcoholism in adulthood. Because at this time there is a growth and development of all vital human systems and functions, the influence of alcohol on these processes will undoubtedly lead to terrible results.

We will note only some of these consequences:

1. Premature onset of sexual life, which depletes the growing organism, causing overexertion of the neural-sexual sphere, and as a result - early weakening of sexual functions.

2. Infertility and inability to carry, give birth and bring up a full-fledged offspring.

3. Sexual contacts of adolescents without contraception lead to early abortions, and further serious complications.

4. There is a great risk of infection with sexually transmitted diseases or sexually transmitted infections, hepatitis B or C, HIV infection.

5. There are failures in the work of the gastrointestinal tract.

6. Damage to the liver, the development of cirrhosis is characteristic.

7. Disorders in the operation of the pancreas (peritonitis etc).

8. Violation of the cardiovascular system (disorders of arterial pressure, etc.).

9. Inflammatory states of the kidneys and urinary tract (urethritis, pyelonephritis) develop.

10. Various inflammatory diseases in the lungs, bronchi, larynx, nasopharynx (bronchitis, bronchiectatic disease, pneumosclerosis, tuberculosis) appear.

11. The immune defense of the body reduces, resulting in increased susceptibility to communicable ailments.

12. Intoxicant causes irreparable harm to the teenager's endocrine system.

13. Possible development and especially complicated course of diabetes.

14. Alterations in blood composition, anemia, etc.

15. A variety of disorders are observed, mainly in the emotional and volitionalsphere, social activity is falling, labor skills are dying out, healthy ambition and moral qualities suffer. To the foreground, emotional disturbances like coarsening, explosiveness, carelessness, lack of initiative, suggestibility appear.

Healing of teenage drinking abuse

To treat alcohol dependence in adolescents successfully you need to know its own nature and characteristics. It’s extremely essential to diagnose the disease as early as possible and initiate healing in order to avoid the development of after-troubles. Adolescent alcohol abuse is quite hard to treat, owing to the inability to use certain medications because of the premature age of the client. It is better to conduct treatment in a hospital under the mandatory control of doctors, home treatment is excluded. To achieve a better result in the healing, we can advise the application of medicinal teas and herbs that have emictory, tonic, immunity-repairing actions. We can recommend sports, exercise, and active rest as well.

So, the problem of adolescent alcoholism needs to be given special attention, not to let things run their course. Children are our future, and if we do not pay attention to this problem today, tomorrow, perhaps, it will be too late.

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