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Teens and holiday drinking: How parents can protect their kids

| Dec 13, 2019 | DWI

Many young people take risks and make mistakes. One such mistake is underage drinking. Teens may experiment with alcohol before they are 21, especially during times like holidays when they are on break from school and are around other people who are drinking.

This holiday, there are some things you can do as a parent to help them avoid the lasting repercussions of an alcohol-related offense.

Be aware of binge-drinking behaviors

A person may be stressed, lonely, depressed, anxious, celebrating, excited, or nervous, leading him or her to drink several drinks in a day or night. This tendency to drink more this time of year is seasonal binge-drinking. It is dangerous, and teens can be just as likely to engage in it as adults are.

Parents should pay attention to signs a teen is binge-drinking. Signs include vomiting, mood changes, incoherent messages, slurred speech, loss of balance, as well as a failure to follow the rules like curfews and checking in with parents at a specific time.

Keep communication lines open

Parents can be distraught to get a call from their intoxicated child asking for a ride home or help. However, this call is better than one from the hospital or police station after a child has been in a car accident or arrested for drunk driving.

To prevent these serious scenarios, parents should be sure their children know they can call for help or a sober ride. While you may dole out some punishments later, ensuring your child gets home safely should be a top priority.

Keep alcohol away from teens at home

Whether you are hosting a party or leaving your teen home with friends while you go out, make sure you keep alcohol out of your child’s hands.

Parents may think that if a teen drinks at home, he or she cannot get in trouble. That is not true. Not only could your child get in trouble, but you could also be held responsible under Pennsylvania social host laws if someone drinks at your home and then causes an accident.

Underage drinking and other alcohol-related offenses can increase during the holidays. Parents who take these precautions can help protect their teens.

However, if your child does wind up facing criminal charges for a drunk driving offense, you can contact an attorney at the Quinn Law Firm at 814-806-2518 for a free consultation.