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Underage Drinking ER Visits Double July Fourth Weekend

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Drunk underage boys are twice as likely to visit an emergency room over the Fourth of July weekend, than any other time of the year, according to a new report from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

"This is a high-risk period for them," Dr. Pete Delaney, director of the Center for Behavioral Statistics and Quality at SAMHSA, told ABC News.

The boys are most likely to visit an ER because of alcohol poisoning, injuries from physical fights and drunk driving accidents, ABC News reported.

SAMHSA researchers looked at underage drinking-related ER visits between July 3 and 5 in 2009, and saw that two-thirds of the visits were from boys, according to ABC News. However, no spike was seen for girls during that weekend.

There's always a spike in underage drinkers during holidays where kids are not in school, USA Today reported. Because of that, it's important for parents to make sure teens aren't getting illegal access to alcohol, Delaney told USA Today

In 2009, there were 200,000 visits to emergency rooms in the U.S. by underage drinkers, MyHealthNewsDaily.com reported. That number hasn't changed since 2004.

Emergency rooms get the most visits from underage drinkers -- both boys and girls -- during New Year's Eve, with 2,000 visits related to alcohol from people under age 21 on Jan. 1, 2009, ABC News reported.

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