Many of the nation’s estimated 10.8 million underage drinkers are turning to their parents or other adults for free alcohol.
A government survey of teens from 2002 to 2006 said slightly more than half had engaged in underage drinking.
Asked about the source of alcohol, 40 percent they got it from an adult for free over the past month, the survey said. Of those, about one in four said they got it from an unrelated adult, one in 16 got it from a parent or guardian and one in 12 got it from another adult family member.
Roughly 4 percent reported taking the alcohol from their own home.
“In far too many instances parents directly enable their children’s underage drinking — in essence encouraging them to risk their health and well-being,” said acting Surgeon General Steven K. Galson. “Proper parental guidance alone may not be the complete solution to this devastating public health problem — but it is a critical part.”
Doctors in Madison said this problem is real and they’ve seen some young teens come in with alcohol poisoning.
Physicians fear drinking at a young age can lead not only to lower performance in school and stressed relationships with family members but can also lead to more serious problems later in life, WISC-TV reported.