Family Alcohol Testing

Why Parents Should be Concerned

Underage drinking is illegal. At the same time it is deeply rooted in American society and is often viewed as a rite of passage. Frequently underage drinking is facilitated by adults. Alcohol is the drug of choice among America’s adolescents and is used by more young people than tobacco or illicit drugs.

Alcohol abuse kills some 5,000 youth under the age of twenty-one each year in the United States. These deaths include motor vehicle crashes, homicides and suicides; all of which are among the top causes of adolescent death. Traffic crashes are the number one killer of teens and over one-third of teen traffic deaths are alcohol-related.

Alcohol use by teens is a strong predictor of sexual activity. Alcohol plays a significant role among underage kids in risky sexual behavior, including unwanted sex, unprotected sex, and sex with multiple partners. Life altering consequences can include unplanned pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and infection with HIV. Underage alcohol use is also associated with academic failure, illicit drug use, tobacco, physical and sexual assault, property crime and a host of long term health issues.

Only recently has science recognized that the brain continues to develop and mature during adolescence. Adolescent brains are very vulnerable to alcohol and underage drinking has an adverse effect on kids' capacity for learning and memory.

The numbers associated with alcohol related injury, violence and unwanted sexual activity should make all parents take notice.

The Benefits of Owning a LifeGuard for Your Family

Owning a precision fuel cell breath tester is a benefit not just for parents and kids but for society at large. Here’s some of the ways LifeGuard can benefit your family.

Parental Monitoring

The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking highlights that active monitoring by parents is associated with better outcomes around adolescent alcohol use. Kids whose parents supervise them closely are far less likely to develop an alcohol problem.

Breath Testers for Alcohol Education

The home use of a breath alcohol monitor is never a substitute for open and honest family discussions about alcohol. Breathalyzer demonstrations are frequently used in schools by visiting Law Enforcement or School Resource Officers (SRO) as part of overall alcohol and DUI education. In the same way, a quality breath testing instrument at home is both education and a deterrent to alcohol abuse. Parents can use the LifeGuard as part of larger parent-child discussions about alcohol, driving and DUI.

When Trust has been Broken

For some parents the idea of a home breathalyzer seems inappropriate either because it feels like a violation of parent-child trust or because it may precipitate an unpleasant confrontation. For a teenager just about the worst thing that a parent can do is unjustly accuse them of something they didn’t do. Accusing your child of alcohol abuse without evidence invites confrontation. Providing them the opportunity to prove or disprove alcohol use, in the privacy of your home, is the least embarrassing and most straightforward way to substantiate or deny your suspicions.

What if I Uncover a Problem?

If you find your child has a problem contact your doctor, school counselor, or your local hospital. Professional help can recommend appropriate courses of action for parents and their children.

More Information

The Real Story of Underage Drinking
Journalist Gregory Morgan spent time with teens that regularly drink. Here's the full article "What Kids Are Not Telling You: The Real Story on Underage Drinking,"