There are few states in the country where underage drinking is more accepted than Wyoming. Approximately 10% of all alcohol sold in the state is consumed by minors. In 2013, 34% of 9th through 12th graders had a drink in the past month, and 21% of those students binge drink. Given how widespread underage drinking is, it's vital that parents and children understand just how dangerous it is.
Underage drinkers consume nearly 10% of all alcohol sold in Wyoming. And the repercussions have been tragic. Today, underage drinking is a leading factor in the top three causes of death among youth in Wyoming: automobile crashes, homicides, and suicides. As a state, we need to stand up together to put a stop to this epidemic.
We all know that children don’t come with a handbook. It’s understandable that most parents don’t know how to prevent their children from drinking alcohol. But the solution is an easy one. Studies have proven that parental influence is the number one reason children don’t drink, and kids are 50% less likely to engage in risky alcohol and drugs when taught about the risks and dangers by their parents.
So, we've laid out a simple plan to keep your child from drinking and we've made it easy to remember: Talk Early and Often.
Why is it important to talk early and often?
- Teens who drink underage are 5 times more likely to have problems with alcohol as adults.
- 95% of all meth users drank alcohol before the age of 13.
- 23% of Wyoming high school students have had their first drink before the age of 13.