||Section requires registration.
||Leaving TeenCentral.Net site.
OK, so what if I drink, but just don’t drive?
Alcohol is used by more young people in the U.S. than tobacco or illegal drugs. It's not easy to say "No" - Peer pressure is especially tough, and the statistics show that not enough teens are saying "No"...
- 3.1% of 12-13 year olds…
- 12.4% of 14-15 year olds…
- 24.6% of 16-17 year olds…
- 48.9% of 18-20 year olds…
... had at least one drink within a month in the United States in 2010
By grade level :
- 72% of students have had alcohol by the end of high school
- 37% of students have had alcohol by eighth grade
What’s considered a "drink"?
A "drink" is defined as a can or bottle of beer, a glass of wine or a wine cooler, a shot of liquor or a mixed drink with alcohol in it.
So, what's the big deal if it's "only one drink"?
It's not always "just one drink". Binge drinking is when a person has five or more drinks within just a couple of hours.
- 1% of 12-13 year olds…
- 6.7% of 14-15 year olds…
- 15.3% of 16-17 year olds…
- 33.3% of 18-20 year olds… …
engaged in binge drinking in the United States in 2010.
|Are the numbers really so bad?
These stats might not seem like a big deal, but when you look at the actual numbers …
- About 10 million teens between the ages of 12 and 20 reported drinking alcohol in just one month
- Roughly 6.5 million of these teens binge drank, and 2 million engaged in heavy drinking (when a person has five or more drinks a day on at least five days during a month)
|Do boys drink more than girls,
or do girls drink more than boys?
In 2010, of teens between the ages of 12 and 20 :
Does it matter where teens live?
- 28.3% of boys and 24.1% of girls reported drinking alcohol
- 19.8% of boys and 14% of girls reported binge drinking
- 6.7% of boys and 3.5% of girls reported heavy drinking
Not really - In 2010, the rate of alcohol use among 12-20 year olds was …
- 25.9% in large cities
- 27.4% in small cities
- 25.5% in non-metropolitan areas
- 30.7% in the Northeast U.S.
- 26.4% in the Midwest U.S.
- 25.6% in the West
- 24.6% in the South
So, are teens drinking alone or with other people?
Teens between the ages of 12 and 20 reported that the last time they drank …
Where are teens drinking?
- 81.6% of them were with two or more people
- 13.1% were with one other person
- 5.2% were alone
Teens between the ages of 12 and 20 reported that the last time they drank (in the month just before they were surveyed) …
How are teens getting alcohol?
- 55.3% were in someone else’s home
- 29.9% were in their own home
- 10.1% of females and 7.2% of males were in a club, bar or restaurant
- 30.6% of underage drinkers paid for their alcohol the last time they drank
- 8.8% purchased alcohol themselves
- 21.6% of them gave money to someone else to buy for them
- Among underage drinkers who did not pay for their own alcohol …
- 38.9% got it from an unrelated person age 21 or older
- 16.6% got it from another underage person
- 21.6% got it from parents, guardians or other adult family members
- 6% got it from their home
- 3.8% took it from someone else’s home
So, really, what’s the harm?
Alcohol use among teens can impact so much more than just the person who is drinking! In 2010…
- 5.8% of 16 and 17 year olds and 15.1% of 18 to 20 year olds reported driving under the influence of alcohol in the United States, and 28% of high school students reported riding in a vehicle driven by someone who had been drinking
- About 5,000 youth under the age of 21 die from injuries caused by underage drinking :
- 1,900 die in motor vehicle crashes
- 1,600 are considered homicides
- 300 are suicides
- 19.1% of underage drinkers reported using illegal drugs within 2 hours the last time they drank
- Statistically, high schoolers who binge drink frequently are at higher risk for :
- Risky sexual behavior
- Assaults o Sexual assaults
- Academic problems
- Legal problems
|What do the statistics look like for Pennsylvania?
Alcohol is the drug being used most often by Pennsylvania’s middle and high school students:
- In 2009, 49.3% of Pennsylvania students reported having used alcohol at least once in their lifetimes
- The stats ranged from 20.8% for 6th graders to 70.0% for 12th graders
- Pennsylvania 8th graders reported a higher rate of alcohol use in their lifetimes compared to 8th graders across the country
- In 2009, 25.5% of Pennsylvania students reported having had alcohol at least once in the month prior to being surveyed
- Their alcohol use ranged from 5.1% for 6th graders to 46.0% for 12th graders
- Pennsylvania 8th and 12th graders reported slightly higher rates of alcohol use in the previous 30 days compared to 8th and 12th graders nationwide
- In 2009, 13.6% of Pennsylvania students had reported binge drinking at least once in the two weeks just before being surveyed
- Across grades, binge drinking ranged from 1.2% for 6th graders to 27.6% for 12th graders
- Pennsylvania 12th graders reported a slightly higher rate of binge drinking compared to their peers across the country
Are Pennsylvania teens drinking and driving, too?
Drinking and driving is a serious issue among Pennsylvania’s underage drinkers. In fact:
- 411 youth were arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in 2011
- 31% of deaths among drivers between the ages of 16 and 20 in 2010 were drinking drivers
- 1,263 drivers who were involved in motor vehicle accidents in 2010 were underage drinking drivers
- 9 youth under the age of 21 were killed in alcohol-related vehicle accidents in 2009
|So what if I drink and drive in Pennsylvania and no one gets hurt?
Pennsylvania’s laws are clear… If you are caught driving with any amount of alcohol in your system, the penalties for the charges are stiff. You can :
- Lose your license for up to one year
- Be charged a fine of up to $500, plus court costs and restitution
- Be given a drug and alcohol evaluation
Youth in Pennsylvania are not immune to the other problems associated with drinking alcohol.
- 2,693 youth 12 - 20 years old were admitted for alcohol treatment in Pennsylvania
- 281 youth were arrested for Drunkenness in 2011
- 5,104 youth were arrested for violation of Liquor Laws in 2011 (which prohibit the use, possession, purchase, sale, manufacture or transportation of alcoholic beverages ).