Alcohol use by people 21 years old and below is rampant more than the use of illicit drugs and tobacco, notes the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It causes more than 4,300 yearly deaths among underage youth. People between 12 and 20 years account for about 11 percent of the total alcohol consumed in the U.S.
Each year, more than 190,000 underage people visit the hospitals for alcohol-related emergencies. In 2013, more than 10 percent of the drinking underage persons drove after taking alcohol, and about 21 percent get involved in binge drinking. About 700,000 students are assaulted by other students who drink alcohol every year, notes the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc. In any given month, more than 4 million underage drink alcohol and more than 11,000 youths try using alcohol for the first time every day in the U.S.
Common reasons for underage drinking include family problems, poor school performance, daily pressures, loneliness, drinking parents and desire to gain confidence. Its consequences include poor grades due to school absence, memory problems, unplanned sex, drug abuse, legal problems, death and accidents. Underage persons who start drinking alcohol before age 15 are likely to suffer from alcohol dependence, states the CDC.