With school out of the way and nothing but free time to kill, teens have a tendency to experiment with more drugs. A new report shows that more teens start using cigarettes, alcohol, and marijuana during the months of June and July than any other time of the year.
The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that more than 11,000 teens use alcohol for the first time every day during the summer months. More than 5,000 smoke their first cigarette and 4,500 try marijuana for the first time per day during the summer.
Dr. H. Westley Clark, director of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, said:
“These months include periods when adolescents are on a break from school and have more idle time; they have fewer structured responsibilities and less adult supervision.”
According to Health Day News, the summer months see about twice as many teenagers trying alcohol for the first time compared to the rest of the year. On average, the rest of the year sees about 5,000 to 8,000 teenagers per day trying their first sip of alcohol.
Bruce Goldman, director of substance abuse services at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, N.Y., said:
“You should have an open dialogue with your children in terms of what they’re doing and about alcohol and drugs. The longer you can delay adolescents from experimenting with alcohol and drugs, the better their chances of not developing problems later in life,” Goldman said. “It’s critical that parents be alert.”
Are you surprised that teens experiment with alcohol and marijuana during the summer months?