Poll of Teens Finds 77 Percent Say They Don’t Drink Alcohol

A poll of high school teens finds 77 percent say they don’t drink alcohol. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), which released the poll, 69 percent of teens say they don’t drink, and an additional 8 percent say they used to drink, but don’t anymore.

When asked why they don’t drink, teens said their top five reasons were because it’s illegal, it can be harmful to their health, it can affect their grades, their parents disapprove, and they don’t want to be like their peers who drink, according to HealthDay.

According to the poll of 695 students, more than half said they would be less likely to be friends with or date someone who is an underage drinker, the article notes.

The results were released during Red Ribbon Week, a national campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of drug and alcohol use among young people.

“As adults, we know how dangerous underage drinking is for our kids, but these new survey results show that teens are getting the message, too,” MADD National President Jan Withers said in a news release.

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    Susan Bradshaw

    October 25, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    This news is a breath of fresh air. One thing…were the surveys administered under completely anonymous conditions? I would find the overall results to be more trustable if that was the case.

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    Metropolitan Drug Commission

    October 25, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    We have a similar percentage (70%) in our county of current non-drinkers. In our eyes, that is fantastic! We have discussed working with our school system to implement a positive social norm campaign that will promote these healthy behaviors as the “cool” thing to do. They need this message at a time when the media and pop culture is portraying a totally different message when it comes to alcohol and other drugs.

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    Michael Haines

    October 24, 2013 at 1:40 PM

    Our Social Norms research has found this data at hundreds of high schools that we have surveyed. It is one of the best kept secrets in every community. We find that when this type of data (77% of teens don’t drink!) is highlighted, by parents, teachers, and helth professionals, it “grows” even more healthy behavior. We have outcome data showing significant reductions in underage drinking when a Social Norms Approach collects this data and feeds it back to teens. Good work!

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