The amount of minors who are reaching for the bottle has plummeted in the last 10 years, and researchers are trying to figure out why.
A stunning new report indicates that minors who are drinking before turning 21 are way down over the last 10 years or so, and binge drinking amount young people has also dropped quite a bit, and experts have a few ideas as to why that is.
A new report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration finds that kids between the ages of 12 and 20 who drink have fallen from 28.8 percent to 22.7 percent between 2002 and 2013, and that those who binge drank fell to 14.2 percent from 19.3 percent — very large dips that suggest that efforts to get the word out on the harm of underage drinking may finally be working, according to a Washington Post report.
There are probably multiple factors that are causing the decline, including better enforcement as well as an increase in the cost of alcohol. But experts largely credit a widespread campaign to spread information on the dangers of underage drinking with the decline, noting that minors are more aware of the risks of alcohol and are more likely to stay away.
Specifically, campaigners have focused on the dangers of drunk driving and the risks of heavy alcohol consumption on the body. And young people appear to be getting the message.
Youth are also well aware of the connection between alcohol and sexual assault, and it’s just one of the many negative things about alcohol consumption that minors seem to keep in the back of their minds more and more often when they think about having a drink.
However, despite the decline, having 14.2 percent of all minors binge drinking remains a massive problem, so the fight must continue if authorities hope to see further drops in alcohol consumption — but at least they appear to be having an effect.