Children and Families Protecting Youth from Substance Misuse Preventing and reducing binge drinking and prescription drug misuse among youth and young adults has become a public health priority given the severity of associated consequences. Frequently defined as drinking four to five drinks (or more) in two hours, binge drinking during adolescence is linked to significantly elevated risks for tobacco and drug use, physical violence, and unsafe sexual behaviors, as well as continued binge drinking and alcohol use disorders in adulthood. Prescription drug misuse among youth, attributed in part to relative ease of access and a misperception that prescription drugs are not dangerous, is resulting in increasingly high rates of overdose, death and risk for infections such as hepatitis C and HIV.
Healthy youth and development influence the entire life course. Through practice, research and policy development, our child welfare experts are helping kids thrive through strong caregiver attachments, stable families, positive peer relationships, access to education and financial capability, and behavioral health interventions.
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