Underage drinking seems to be taken as a fact of life. It’s the sort of thing that everyone disapproves of in concept, but at the same time it is also sort of assumed that it’s going on all the time. Perversely, much of our culture’s concept of transitioning to adulthood is wrapped up in the types of rebellion that are typified by underage drinking. In many ways it has become an American rite of passage. It has become what is expected.

Underage drinking is most associated with high schoolers, but it begins in middle school more often than you might think. There are staggeringly large numbers of underage alcohol poisoning hospitalizations and even deaths, to say nothing of the injuries and fatalities as a result of a car accident caused by underage drinking.


How Can We Turn The Tide?

These kids deserve more than a half-hearted winking denial. It is vital that we communicate the risks and dangers of drinking early as well as helping developing adolescents to understand their bodies and the way mind altering substances can affect them. For all the intoxicant consumption in our society there is very little understanding or discussion of addiction, and how a chemical desirability becomes a chemical dependency.  

No one is claiming this change will be easy. For generations we have built up this culture of denial around alcohol consumption and abuse. We have stigmatized addiction and blamed those who suffer from it instead of recognizing them in their suffering and seeking to help them. It is only just within the last few years that our society has begun to properly conceive of  addiction as an affliction rather than a choice. This shift is important because it means the difference between those with a problem hiding it in shame and allowing it to spiral out of control and the possibility of them accepting the reality of chemical dependency and taking reasonable steps to mitigate it.


Treating Addiction With Medical & Therapeutic Care Rather Than Shame

Discovery InstituteOur collective conversation around alcohol needs to transcend the legality, the cultural implications and deal with the simple fact that some people suffer from a predilection towards addiction, and that for those people alcohol presents an existential danger. Stigmatizing alcohol consumption drives it into the shadows and away from the medical professionals that can offer very real and meaningful aid. One of the major reasons a child develops a dependence on alcohol is because they have seen a parent exhibit the same behaviors. If a parent is unable to admit that they have a problem, how can a teenager feel safe doing so?

At Discovery Institute we offer a place of detoxification and rehabilitation. A place without the shadow of shame. We offer a light to shine on the anxieties and trauma that keep a person coming back to their drink over and over. Through medical detox a patient’s body will get rid of the substance in their system and through rehabilitation patients learn life skills and the kind of self confidence they need to face the world. They learn the art of sober living in New Jersey detox centers and in New Jersey rehab facilities.

To get started down your path of successful rehabilitation, contact us today.


Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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