As a teen, it’s important you take responsibility for your own safety and security. This is an essential part of life where you’ll be working on transitioning into adulthood. As you grow away from your parents’ care, you will be faced with more and more choices. Your response will determine a lot of your future. A life of new privileges, including driving and going out without your parents, leads to new responsibilities. Read about these top three dangers and work to make healthy choices in your own life.
Alcohol Use and Abuse
Teens are not legally able to purchase or possess alcohol, but many find it easy to obtain, whether it’s from their parents or friends. Drinking has many negative effects on the body, and early use can lead to a greater chance of alcoholism in adulthood. Binge drinking, or drinking heavily in one sitting, can lead to serious health problems and even alcohol poisoning. Over time, it can damage your liver and could lead to cancer. Each year, 5,000 people under 21 die due to underage drinking.
Teens need to know the true dangers of prescription drug abuse. It is never okay to take someone else’s medication. Parents should keep all family prescriptions in a secure location for everyone’s safety. Prescription drug abuse can lead to dangerous drug interactions and even death. It is also a gateway to other drugs such as heroin.
If you are offered a friend’s prescription or something they have taken from their parents, make sure you tell an adult in authority, or your school resource officer.
According to this article by Cloud Media News, dangers behind the wheel kill more teens than any other cause of death. Driving unsafely doesn’t only happen when under the influence of alcohol. 33% of all deaths between ages 13 and 19 were caused by motor vehicle accidents. Distractions, such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, or too much talking with passengers, can be extremely dangerous. Teens also need to make sure they do not drive impaired by drugs or alcohol, and that everyone in the car wears seat belts.
With a little thought and caution, teens can protect themselves from serious dangers. Talk to your parents or a trusted adult for help and don’t be afraid to ask for advice when you need it. Make sure you are a good example to your friends and younger siblings, and avoid becoming a statistic yourself.