that about 10% of 12 year olds say they have tried alcohol. By age 15, that number jumps to 50%. Some may try alcohol as early as 9 years old.

It's never too soon to talk to your children about alcohol. Most 6 years olds know that alcohol is only for adults but between the ages of 9 and 13, kids start to view alcohol differently. Many begin to think drinking is OK. Some even start to experiment.

What Can You Do?

  • Be a positive adult role model.
  • Be prepared. Your child may become curious about alcohol; he or she may turn to you for answers and advice.
  • Use "natural" opportunities, such as dinner time or while doing chores, to start open, honest conversations about drinking.

Over the last few decades, experts have learned much more about the dangers of children drinking alcohol. Underage drinking has many serious risks. Children who drink alcohol are more likely to:

  • Use drugs
  • Get bad grades
  • Hurt themselves or someone else
  • Make bad decisions
  • Have health problems

You are the most powerful influence on your child's behavior.

(The information above was taken from an article written by the Todd County (MN) Health and Human Services.)

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