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Parents’ Impact on Teen Drinking

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When your kids are young, it might seem funny when they ask for a sip of beer—and easy to say no. But as they approach adolescence, kids’ interest in alcohol may seem increasingly worrisome, especially as parents have less control over the choices kids make when outside the family home. Fortunately, a new study published online in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research sheds some light on how parents impact their children’s drinking habits for the better, reports NPR.

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In the study, researchers in the Netherlands, where teen alcohol abuse is on the rise, studied 238 Dutch teens’ views of alcohol, as well as those of their parents. They found that teens with strict parents were less likely to drink on impulse (for example, if they saw a bottle of beer) than those with more permissive parents—and better able to think about their choice and evaluate the consequences.

Plus: Study: No Alcohol Safe During Pregnancy

The results of this study may help parents struggling with the best way to handle teenage drinking, i.e. allowing kids to drink at home, where there is parental supervision, or enforcing a strict no underage drinking policy, and lead more parents of tweens and teens to take a harder stance against drinking.

What’s your take on teen drinking? Do you accept it as a given, or do you plan to restrict access to alcohol until your children are of legal drinking age.

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