Young people

Many parents are concerned about alcohol as well as other drugs as their children grow up, and for good reason. Young people are at greater risk of alcohol-related harm than adults.


Relatively recent research has shown that the brain keeps developing until we’re in our mid-twenties, and that alcohol is more harmful than previously thought to young people. Findings include:

  • alcohol exposes teenagers to a greater risk of injury and harm, and doing things they may later regret, than adults
  • teenagers are likely to drink more and take more risks when drinking compared to older people
  • drinking early can cause problems with alcohol later in life and damage the brain.
Young people talking in the kitchen

Alcohol contributes to the 3 leading causes of death among young people:

  • unintentional injuries
  • homicide
  • suicide.

As a result, parents often feel overwhelmed as their children grow up and they have to deal with issues like alcohol and drugs.

Read more

Discover a range of resources to prevent them from developing problems:

Alcohol and young people

Younger people are particularly vulnerable to alcohol related harms.

Helping them to party safely

Tips on before, during and after the party.

Talking to your child about alcohol and drugs

A guide for having this important conversation.

How to influence your teenager

Who are the biggest influencers in their lives?

Working with other parents and your school

Starting a dialogue with your child’s school and other parents is a first step.

Identifying drug use

Drugs can affect people differently making it hard to tell for sure that someone is using them.