Careernav and Vic Health
What are the health risks for young people from alcohol?
Risks of accidents, injuries, violence and self harm are high among underage drinkers. Risk-taking behavior, unsafe sex choices, sexual coercion and alcohol overdose increase when young people drink alcohol. The rate of females aged 16-17 appearing in casualty due to ‘acute intoxication’ increased by 66% from 1999-2005, while for males, it increased by 25%.
Initiation of alcohol use at a young age may increase the likelihood of negative physical and mental health problems, social problems and alcohol dependence.
Childhood and adolescence are critical times for brain development and the brain is more sensitive to alcohol-induced damage during these times.
What are some tips for a safe night out?
Start with a soft drink: You will drink much faster if you are thirsty, so have a non-alcoholic drink to quench your thirst before you start drinking alcohol.
Use standard drinks: Monitor how much alcohol you drink. By converting what you drink into standard drinks, it is easier to keep track. For more information on standard drinks, click here.
Eat before or while you are drinking: Eating slows your drinking pace and fills you up. If you have a full stomach, alcohol will be absorbed more slowly.
Avoid 'shouts': Try not to get involved in shouts, or rounds. Drink at your own pace - not someone else's. If you do get stuck in a shout, buy a non-alcoholic drink for yourself when it's your turn.
One drink at a time: Don't let people top up your drinks. It is hard to keep track of how much alcohol you have drunk.
Pace yourself: Try having a 'spacer', a non-alcoholic drink or water every second or third drink.
Try the low-alcohol alternative: A wide range of light beers are available. Low-alcohol or non-alcoholic wines are also becoming more available. Most places that serve cocktails also serve non-alcoholic versions.
Be assertive: Don't be pressured into drinking more than you want or intend to. Tell your friends 'thanks, but no thanks'.
For more tips on how to drink less and to minimise the risk of alcohol-related harm, contact Directline on 1800 888 236.
DirectLine provides 24-hour, 7-day counseling, information and referral. DirectLine is available to anyone in Victoria who is affected by an alcohol or drug problem
For more information of alcohol, visit these websites:
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