Throughout your teens and into your twenties, your brain continues to grow and change as the synapses that connect all the different neurons become more complex and efficient. Research shows that drinking alcohol while your brain is developing might stall or alter this process. One part of the brain that is affected by alcohol is the hippocampus.
Alcohol is the most widely used recreational drug in the world, and under-age alcohol use is a major worldwide public health issue. Adolescence is broadly defined as the transition between dependence upon, and relative independence from, parents or caregivers, characterized by dramatic physical changes signalling sexual maturation of the body—and, often, by impulsivity, poor decision-making, and risky behavior, including binge drinking, defined as intermittent exposure in which alcoholic drinks are consumed each time. It is also an extended period of heightened neuroplasticityduring which the prefrontal cortex—involved in so-called executive functions such as planning and decision-making—undergoes extensive synaptic pruning and myelination, processes which continue well into the third decade of life.
As much as parents may not like to think about it, the truth is that many kids and teens try alcohol during their high school and college years, long before it's legal for them to drink it. Although experimentation with alcohol can be common among kids, it's not safe or legal. So it's important to start discussing alcohol use and abuse with your kids at an early age and keep talking about it as they grow up.
The key word here is moderate. Some studies have shown a connection between light to moderate drinking and decreased heart disease. It is a delicate balance, however, and increasing alcohol intake to more than 4 drinks a day can flip any potential benefits by increasing your risk of high blood pressure, heart rhythm abnormalities, heart attack, stroke, and death. It's not just how much you drink overall but how much you drink at a time that plays a role in your risk.
Binge drinking during adolescence can have lasting effects on brain function, according to a new study published in The Journal of Neuroscience. Binge drinking - defined as men consuming five or more drinks and women drinking four or more drinks in 2 hours - is a serious problem in the US. Past research has documented the effects of binge drinking on the brain - particularly during adolescence - when the brain is still developing.
During a time when teens are meant to be attending school dances, enjoying summer vacation, and graduating from high school, they are often instead participating in underage drinking. Teenage drinking can have some serious short-term effects including making the young person sick, making poor choices, accidents and injuries, and engaging in risky sexual behaviors. The teenage years are the time of life considered to be the most physically healthy with the lowest occurrence of disease.
Alcohol is a legal drug in Australia and is commonly consumed by Australians for pleasure and sociability. When consumed in moderation the effects of alcohol are positive, after one standard drink individuals will feel relaxed, confident and talkative. One standard drink consumed in 1 hour will raise the blood alcohol concentration BAC of an individual with average build by approximately 0.
Alcohol is one of the most commonly used and abused drugs by teenagers across the United States. But, also causes a lot of long-term consequences as well. Drinking as a teen can actually be more damaging, as the teen brain is in a crucial stage of development.
The best available current evidence suggests that consumption of alcohol chemically known as ethanol does not improve health. Previous assertions that low or moderate consumption of alcohol improved health have been deprecated by more careful and complete meta-analysis. Heavy consumption of ethanol alcohol abuse can cause severe detrimental effects.
Warning: Binge drinking can change the brain in ways that make it more difficult to have self-control and not drink later. Alcohol is a drug. And every day, more than 4, American kids aged 15 and younger take their first full drink of this drug. And the problem is not just that this consumption is illegal.