Teen Problem Drinking: Not a Phase

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 9:02 PM, March 12th, 2016

A new study out of Indiana University suggests that problem drinking in teens is not “just a phase.” Early drinking strongly predicts who will continue to be alcohol dependent in their twenties, CNN Health reports.

Study Results

Researchers assessed the drinking problems of 597 Finnish twins at age 18 and followed up with in-person interviews when the twins reached age 25. They found that 52% of the study participants showed problem drinking at age 18. Those scores held at age 25, when nearly half of the participants were assessed as dependent on alcohol (46.2%) or met criteria for alcohol abuse (1.5%).

The key finding was that the more drinking-related problems experienced by an adolescent at age 18, the greater the likelihood that adolescent would be diagnosed with alcoholism seven years later, at age 25.

Key Finding

Research in Action

At ASAP, we encourage parents to act. We provide treatment for teens with Substance Use Disorders. Education classes meet weekly for teens who do not yet have a serious issue with alcohol or other drugs (AOD), to discourage use. During our assessment process, we encourage parents to treat these issues as seriously as they would any other medical need.


ASAP is Cincinnati’s premiere outpatient treatment center for teenagers and their families struggling with substance use.


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