Teenage drinking could lead to other problems - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Teenage drinking could lead to other problems

February 9, 2007

Tifton - - A South Georgia mental health center says teens who drink often need counseling.

The Greenleaf Center has a teen focus program which targets adolescents dealing with common problems such as peer-pressure, low self-esteem, and substance abuse.

Counselors say often those issues are linked. Though we often think of peer pressure as the major cause of substance abuse, they say a child's environment at home is a larger influence.

That's why they try to catch the problem early.  

"If a pattern has started, you have the opportunity when they are young to break that pattern and kind of re-program some thinking and ways of thinking with situations that cause the initial abuse and habit forming trait," says B.J. Weisner.

She says counselors try to reach out to the whole family to train parents on relating to their teen.

Greenleaf says things to look for in a child who may be drinking are changes in their habits and values. They also recommend becoming more involved in your child's everyday life.

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