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Parent's Guide to Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention

Teens who start drinking before the age of 15, in addition to potentially damaging the still developing body and mind, are 5 times more likely to develop problems with alcohol later in life; and when you consider that more than a quarter of all high school kids report having their first real drink prior to the age of 13…we all still have out work cut out for us.

Addiction and drug abuse prevention begins in the home within the family, and although parents rightly believe that peer pressure and the influence of friends exerts a powerful force during the teenage years, kids who don’t drink or use drugs cite their parents' influence as the number one factor leading them away from early abuse. Contrarily, the number one factor influencing kids that do abuse drugs and alcohol is the perception of permissive or lenient parenting styles.

Sometimes parents do everything they can towards drug abuse prevention and ultimately end up heartbroken as their child succumbs to abuse and addiction, and some parents who make no effort in prevention have children that excel without ever experimenting with use and abuse; there are no guarantees in life and especially when parenting an adolescent, but parents do exert a major influence, and prevention always starts in the home.

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