The holiday season is often one of celebration and gratitude for friends, family and all of the things that we are grateful for over the past year, but for the teens in your household, it can be the start to a life-altering pattern. Did you know that more teens start drinking during the holidays than any other time of year? There are several reasons for this:

  • School is out and oftentimes parents don’t monitor where they are, who they are with and what they are doing.
  • There are lots of parties and celebrations where alcohol is on hand.
  • Even relatives or friends of yours might think it’s ok if they have a glass of champagne or spiked eggnog at a party.

You might think that a drink here and there won't impact your child, but some recent studies are proving that theory incorrect. The reality is that when parents supply alcohol to minors, it actually increases, rather than decreases, the risk for continued drinking in the teenaged years and leads to subsequent drinking problems later in life, according to and The Treatment Research Institute.

Here are some tips that can help keep your teens safe during the holidays and year round!

  • Keep your alcohol and prescription drugs locked up. You might be able to trust your kids, but you don’t know if you can trust their friends.
  • If your child is spending time at a friend’s home, talk to the parent and make sure they will be supervised.
  • Have a conversation with your child about the dangers of underage drinking, what your expectations are and what the consequences will be if they do drink.
  • Statistics show that underage youth are most likely to get alcohol from a friend or family member. Make sure you talk to your friends and family members, so they know that you don’t want them providing alcohol to your teen.
  • Suggest that your kids “give back” during the holidays. This can be volunteering at the local food bank, visiting with an elderly neighbor, offering free babysitting to a single mom or singing holiday songs in the neighborhood.

Weld Country Prevention Partners will be featured on this station's edition of Counterpoint at 6:00 AM on Sunday, December 8th.

About This Content's Sponsor

This information is provided by Weld County Prevention Partners, a coalition of concerned parents, health care and social services professionals, community leaders, educators, business owners, law enforcement, volunteers and citizens who want the best for the youth in our community. You can find a wealth of information on their official website.

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