Not everything has taken a turn for the worse when it comes to matters related to teen activities. In the past, it has always been bad news when national surveys on teen drinking, alcohol abuse and unwanted pregnancies release the data they have gathered.
In a recent study done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, despite TV shows like “16 and Pregnant” and “Jersey Shore,” it’s good to know that teens are making the right choices when it comes to important life-changing decisions.
It may be too early to celebrate, but in the last MetroWest Adolescent Health Survey of 23,187 high school students and 11,597 middle school kids, trends in smoking, binge drinking, and violence show a steady decline. Teen pregnancy was also at the lowest, with a 37% decrease from 20 years ago.
Another example worthy of appreciation is on alcohol consumption of kids. In 2006, 9% of middle school students already had their taste of alcoholic beverages but in 2010, it was down at 4.9%. For high school students, it was 42.2% in 2006 and then decreased in 2010 at 34.7%.
The positive results can be attributed to parents who are doing their share in keeping their teens safe and healthy. Liquor stores who do not sell to minors and groups who support anti-underage drinking also made their moves in keeping teens alcohol-free.
As mentioned in a feature on the Metro West Daily News, figures may still be high, but the downward trend is a very welcome surprise.
Both parents and children still have a long way to go in the fight against drugs and alcohol abuse and teen pregnancies. Only if families and the community will be supportive of teen’s good decisions will they be able to win in the end.