Underage Drinking on TODAY

In a segment with Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb this week on TODAY, two doctors shared their take on talking with kids about drugs and alcohol. Click here to see the segment and read the article.

While we agree with their strategy of frequent and open conversations with your kids about alcohol (starting early), one thing they didn’t cover is stressing the importance of waiting until 21 to drink alcohol. 

They talk about “minimizing the risks” associated with teens experimenting with alcohol, but we know that the longer your child waits to start drinking, the safer he or she will stay.

Of all the dangers your teen faces, underage drinking is among the worst. Whether teens are experimenting with beer, wine or other liquor, alcohol presents a serious—and potentially deadly—threat. Compared with non-drinking classmates, teens who drink are more likely to:

  • Die in a car crash
  • Get pregnant
  • Flunk school
  • Be sexually assaulted
  • Become an alcoholic later in life
  • Take their own life through suicide

Get the tools needed to start this ongoing conversation, including a research-based parent handbook with proven strategies for talking with teens about alcohol, at www.madd.org/powerofparents. And thank you TODAY show for covering such an important topic!