The teenage brain simply isn’t developed enough to handle the effects of alcohol abuse. The impact is long-term damage that can make dealing with addiction, and everyday issues difficult for the entirety of their life. Unfortunately, alcohol is one of the drugs of choice among teens. Even worse, teenage drinking is often binge drinking rather than moderate drinking.
Teens throughout Fayetteville, NC may be familiar with a party scene. With numerous colleges nearby Fayetteville has many people who drink regularly. Not everyone is willing to follow the law, and there are instances where teens have access to alcohol.
When teens have access to alcohol, see it as a way to escape their problems, identify it with social bonding or relationship building, you have a toxic mix. The life ahead of people who spend their teenage year’s drinking is difficult. Not only because of the stress that comes with alcohol abuse but because of the long-term physical and emotional impact on their developing mind.
Effects on the Brain
On a medical level, binge drinking or drinking heavily at a young age reduces the myelin in the brain. The changes in myelin will lead to cognitive impairment throughout their life. Why? Myelin is the coating which protects nerve fibers and helps them communicate. Without that, as teens grow, they will have limited cognitive abilities.
Another side effect of binge drinking is the loss of memory and learning abilities. Studies on rats have shown a lasting effect on memory building ability. The newer findings, however, reveal that alcohol can impact developing brains by limiting the ability to retain new information.
These major impacts on the brain and its core functions of cognitive ability, learning, and memory retainment are undeniable. They’re bad for teens more than any other drinking age group because their brain is still developing.
If you’ve noticed your teen drinking, there may already be damaged. You can work with your teen to uncover how this behavior is impacting their final years of development. Without shaming or building upon the situation, if a teen waits only a few years they can avoid the substantial damage and drink legally if they choose.
Hypertension, a medical concern associated with the elderly, is cropping up in adults that reported binge drinking through their teens and early adulthood. The connection is that binge drinking has a lasting impact on blood pressure. It’s estimated in studies recent findings that one in four young drinkers meet the specs for pre-hypertension.
Other physical effects of drinking can include liver disease and diabetes. As teens are likely to engage in heavier drinking over shorter periods of time, they are more likely to do more damage internally than adult drinkers.
As part of heavier drinking habits, comes riskier behavior. Risky behavior comes with both physical and emotional damage. Regarding the physical damage of risky behavior, unplanned pregnancy, STIs, and injuries from drunk driving accidents can have long-lasting physical damage.
Teens take risky action. Not only do they take part in emotionally driven behavior, but they often have little regard for the consequences. From unprotected sex to driving and everything in between, the emotional effects of drinking on teens can follow them through their life.
While teens will often engage in drinking with the best of intention in a social setting that doesn’t eliminate the worst from happening. Rape, further drug use, fights, STIs, unplanned pregnancy, and drunk driving accidents all come with severe emotional recourse.
As part of these emotional effects, therapy may be a critical step in helping your teen begin their recovery. Although one or two nights of binge drinking may not seem like addiction, it is alcohol abuse. This type of abuse will often progress to addiction and result in the life-long struggle against the damages from a few nights in high school.
Teenage Drinking and Alcohol Abuse
This illegal behavior comes with far more serious risks than dealing with the justice system. Seeking help on behalf of your teen may be the only way to break this cycle early. People abusing alcohol frequently report very early use in their life.
The good news is that there are many resources available. Rehab Carolinas make it easy for those who abuse alcohol to get help, regardless of age. Additionally, family therapy is an available option to hold the entire family learns how to handle these difficult subjects.
If you want to get help for your teen, seek guidance from a qualified rehabilitation center. Confronting an addict may have unintended consequences.