One of the scariest things about raising teens is the possibility that they might be influenced to drink. You can warn them of the dangers and consequences until you’re blue in the face, but sometimes, peer pressure gets the best of them. The American Academy of Pediatrics found that more than four million adolescents drink alcohol in any month.
And what’s more frightening, is how clever they’ve become about hiding the act from parents. Once upon a time, teens stole alcohol from their parents, so keeping a close watch on your own liquor cabinet was a fine way to curb the problem. But today, their creativity puts the old trick of refilling bottles with Sprite to shame. And the latest trend in undercover drinking is especially savvy – especially around Halloween time.
Teens are using gummy candy (bears and worms to be exact) to get drunk. They soak the candy in alcohol, Keloland.com reports.
Darcy Jensen from Prairie View Prevention Services in South Dakota works with school districts to prevent teen drinking as part of the “Parents Matter” campaign. She sent out a warning to schools last week to warn them about the trend. It’s important for parents to be aware so that they can spot if their teen has tried it, she says.
"Maybe someone has offered the candy and they didn't even know. So telling the kids ahead of time this could be something to be aware of is important," Jensen said.
And though it’s hard to see the positive side of teens becoming sneakier when it comes to something as dangerous as underage drinking, a trend like this can be used to open communication on the topic.
"It's a good conversation starter to talk about the whole issue of alcohol and underage drinking and the hazards," Jensen said.