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Exam teens 'may feel pressure to drink'
[Posted: Wed 14/09/2011 by Deborah Condon www.irishhealth.com]
The parents of teenagers due to receive their Junior Certificate results today are being urged to talk to their children about their plans to celebrate.
Over 56,000 students are set to receive their results today, following last June's examinations. Most are aged between 15 and 16. However, according to the charity, Alcohol Action Ireland (AAI), recent research showed that the average age that Irish children start drinking is now 14, compared to 16 a decade ago.
"Students receiving their results deserve to go out and celebrate the end of a tough exam season. For some, these plans will involve alcohol. Many could feel that they have to drink to celebrate and even feel under pressure to do so," explained AAI director, Fiona Ryan.
She said that the main thing for everybody celebrating later is to ‘be safe' and insisted that ‘not everyone will be drinking'. However, for those who do choose to drink, she asked that they follow some simple guidelines, such as knowing how they are going to get home and not taking a lift from someone who has been drinking.
Ms Ryan reminded parents and guardians that their child may end up in a difficult situation as a result of their choice to drink alcohol.
"We would urge parents to let their teens know that if they find themselves in trouble, as a parent tell them you would much prefer they call home than fear the consequences of their drinking," she added.
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