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The Teenage Brain, Drinking & Risky Behavior CT Youth Services Association

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This presentation was delivered at the CT Youth Services Association Annual Conference on October 2, 2009.

This presentation was delivered at the CT Youth Services Association Annual Conference on October 2, 2009.

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  • Brain stem : Medulla Oblongata & Pons - - oldest part of the brain; respiration, body temp., blood pressure, digestion, etc., reflexes, automatic functions Cerbellum: “little brain” – coordinates muscle movement & integrates vestibular feedback; rote muscle memory/coordination Temporal Lobe: - language centers (left side) Occipital Lobe: - visual processing Parietal Lobe: - orientation, calculation, recognition, somatosensory information; goal-directed voluntary movement Frontal Lobe: - judgments we make about what occurs in our daily activities. Controls our emotional response. Controls our expressive language. Assigns meaning to the words we choose. Involves word associations. Memory for habits and motor activities.
  • Physical – excelling in athletics, dance, theater Emotion – will commit to a cause OR a boyfriend/girlfriend Motivation – earning driver’s license, beating next level on Doom, keeping up with Facebook or Twitter Judgement – Prefrontal cortex not fully developed until the age of 25
  • These are behaviors/attitudes we typically see in most teenagers at some time
  • We spend all this effort and worry working to protect the brain when our children are young They seem to appreciate it All our effort rewards us with a TEENAGER! NEXT SLIDE IS VERY TECHNICAL, SO BEAR WITH ME PLEASE
  • -the brain stops processing information efficiently -stop “thinking clearly” -more poor decisions that are not typical as described earlier
  • 2.7 TIMES MORE LIKELY
  • The Surgeon General’s Call to Action To Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking 2007 - - Kenneth P. Moritsugu, M.D., M.P.H. Citation - Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General's Call to Action To Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General, 2007. This publication is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.surgeongeneral.gov and at http://www.hhs.gov/od
  • Safety so that our children can master developmental tasks and grow up to reach their dreams and accomplish goals -must do this without being overprotective -youth today face different risks than we faced >more media & advertising; smaller extended families; more controlled settings and situations when younger >less independence when younger because of structure & more influence from ever present media can lead to difficulty making independent decisions when older -good decisions come from having knowledge -Support >parents work together >students work together
  • THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS SAFE TEENAGE DRINKING TAKING THE CAR KEYS DOES NOT CREATE SAFETY
  • -data adjusted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education level, drug use (current, former, never), smoking status (C, F, N), marital status, family history of alcoholism, & history of alcohol dependence -”Did you ever accidentally injure yourself badly, get hurt in a traffic accident, or anything like that?” -”Did you ever get into a situation while drinking or after drinking that increased your chances of getting hurt-like swimming, using machinery, or walking in a dangerous area or around heavy traffic?”
  • -data adjusted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education level, drug use (current, former, never), smoking status (C, F, N), marital status, family history of alcoholism, & history of alcohol dependence -”Did you ever get into a situation while drinking or after drinking that increased your chances of getting hurt-like swimming, using machinery, or walking in a dangerous area or around heavy traffic?”
  • -data adjusted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education level, drug use (current, former, never), smoking status (C, F, N), marital status, family history of alcoholism, & history of alcohol dependence
  • -data gathered from College students age 19+ who have ever been drunk -data adjusted for age, gender, race/ethnicity, marital status, parental drinking history, age first smoked cigarettes, age first used marijuana -”Since the beginning of the school year, how often has your drinking caused you to engage in unplanned sexual intercourse?”
  • -data gathered from College students age 19+ who have ever been drunk -data adjusted for age, gender, race/ethnicity, marital status, parental drinking history, age first smoked cigarettes, age first used marijuana -”Since the beginning of the school year, how often has your drinking caused you to not use protection when you had sex?”
  • 685% increase in the chance of alcohol abuse 450% increase in the chance of alcohol dependence Abuse = repeated use resulting in failure to fulfill obligations at work, home, school; or driving a car while impaired; or legal problems (disorderly conduct while drunk); or personal & relationship problems related to intoxication Dependence = 3 or more of the following, tolerance; withdrawal; use more than expected; desire to use; too much time spent obtaining, using, and recovering from use; giving up social/recreational activities; continued use after recognize physical or psychological problem
  • Binge drinking 5 or more drinks in a row for men 4 or more drinks in a row for women
  • Drawing upon an “exposure opportunity” concept described by Wade Hampton Frost, the authors studied two mechanisms to help account for prior observations about the “stepping-stone” or “gateway” sequences that link the use of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and cocaine. Data were obtained from four nationally representative and independent cross-sectional samples of US household residents ( n = 44,624 persons aged 12–25 years). Data were gathered using standardized self-report methods and were analyzed via survival methods. Results indicated that users of tobacco and alcohol were more likely than nonusers to have an opportunity to try marijuana and were more likely to actually use marijuana once a marijuana opportunity had occurred. Opportunity to use cocaine was associated with prior marijuana smoking. Among young people with a cocaine opportunity, those who had used marijuana were more likely to use cocaine than were those with no history of marijuana use. The observed associations did not seem to arise solely as a result of young drug users’ seeking out opportunities to use drugs. Applying Frost’s epidemiologic concept of exposure opportunity, the authors offer new epidemiologic evidence on the sequences that link earlier use of alcohol and tobacco to later illegal drug involvement. Am J Epidemiol 2002;155:918–25.
  • Supportive – because your child has hard choices and many conflicts -pleasing you, pleasing self, fitting in, managing HS, etc Proud – because everyday they make more good choices than poor choices

The Teenage Brain, Drinking & Risky Behavior   CT Youth Services Association The Teenage Brain, Drinking & Risky Behavior CT Youth Services Association Presentation Transcript

  • CT Youth Services Association Annual Conference The Teenage Brain, Alcohol, and Risky Behavior Presented by Christopher Brown School Psychologist & Licensed Professional Counselor Coordinator – Special Education Support Services, Hamden Public Schools Adjunct Instructor – Counseling & School Psychology Graduate Program, Southern Connecticut State University
  • The Brain
  • Adolescent Brain Development
    • Develops from back to front
      • Physical coordination (Cerebellum)
      • Emotion (Amygdala – midbrain)
        • Passionate, committed, but overreactive
      • Motivation (Nucleus Acumbens – mid)
        • Not always directed at best priorities
      • Judgment/Reasoning (Prefrontal Cortex)
        • Decisions, impulse control, forethought, planning
  • Adolescent Brain Development
    • What Is The Impact
      • difficulty holding back or controlling emotions,
      • a preference for physical activity,
      • a preference for high excitement and low effort activities (video games, dating, drugs, rock 'n' roll),
      • poor planning and judgment (rarely thinking of negative consequences),
      • more risky, impulsive behaviors, including experimenting with drugs and alcohol.
  • Protecting The Brain
  • Alcohol & The Adolescent Brain
    • Brain development guides behavior & behavior impacts brain development
    • Alcohol disrupts normal/typical brain development
      • Negative impact on memory centers
      • Negative impact on coping with normal pressure and managing social stressors
  • Protecting The Teenage Brain
    • Drinking alcohol is like…
      • Riding in a car without a seatbelt
      • Riding a bike without a helmet
    • You must know the risks in order to protect yourself and your brain
  • Alcohol & The Adolescent Brain
    • Brain Chemistry
      • Dopamine is key neurotransmitter for experiencing pleasure
        • Freud taught “pleasure principle” guides behavior
      • Alcohol disrupts the development of reward centers and how brain uses dopamine
        • Teen does not feel “good” without alcohol
        • Leads to more use of alcohol
  • Why Parents Are More Important Than Ever
    • We know they have the most influence
    • Parents Do Matter
    • Peer network is not strong
      • Unreliable
      • Can change in a moment
    • Media bombards and influences teens
      • Movies, commercials, videos, etc.
  • Parents Do Matter
    • Middle school students who believe underage drinking is acceptable to their parents were…
    FIVE times more likely to have drunk alcohol in the previous 30 days
  • Parents Do Matter
    • Ninth grade students who believe underage drinking is acceptable to their parents were…
    nearly THREE times more likely to have drunk alcohol in the previous 30 days
  • U.S. Surgeon General Call To Action - 2007
    • Alcohol is the most widely used substance of abuse among America’s youth. A higher percentage of young people between the ages of 12 and 20 use alcohol than use tobacco or illicit drugs. The physical consequences of underage alcohol use range from medical problems to death by alcohol poisoning, and alcohol plays a significant role in risky sexual behavior, physical and sexual assaults, various types of injuries, and suicide. Underage drinking also creates secondhand effects for others, drinkers and nondrinkers alike, including car crashes from drunk driving, that put every child at risk.
  • U.S. Surgeon General Call To Action - 2007
    • I have issued this … to focus national attention on this enduring problem and on new, disturbing research which indicates that the developing adolescent brain may be particularly susceptible to long-term negative consequences from alcohol use. Recent studies show that alcohol consumption has the potential to trigger long-term biological changes that may have detrimental effects on the developing adolescent brain, including neuro-cognitive impairment.
  • CT Suburban Youth Survey Data Funding from CT DMHAS
  • Cheshire PS & CT Data I had at least one drink in past 30 days
  • Trumbull PS & CT Data I had at least one drink in past 30 days
  • CONSEQUENCES OF UNDERAGE DRINKING Reducing Risk & Increasing Protection
  • Remaining Safe
    • Changing times require that we change
    • Knowledge
      • Know the current risks
    • Support
      • Working together to manage risks
      • Reduces stress & increases strength
    • Mastery
      • Personal skills to manage risk
  • Current Risks of Underage Drinking
    • Most visible
      • Auto accidents
    • Less Visible Risks
      • Unintentional injury
      • Fighting and violence
      • Unplanned/Unprotected sex
      • Increased chance of addiction
      • Alcohol poisoning
  • Unintentional Injury Hingson, R., et al. JAMA. 2000;284:1527-1533
  • Unintentional Injury Hingson, R., et al. JAMA. 2000;284:1527-1533
  • Violence Hingson, R., et al. Pediatrics. 2001;108;872-877
  • Sexual Activity Hingson, R., et al. Pediatrics. 2003;111;34-41
  • Sexual Activity Hingson, R., et al. Pediatrics. 2003;111;34-41
  • Risk of Addiction DeWit, D., et al. Am J Psychiatry 157:745-750, May 2000
  • Risk of Addiction
    • Chances of lifetime dependence decreased by 14% with each increasing year of age at onset of first use.
    • Chances of lifetime abuse decreased by 8% with each increasing year of age of onset of first use.
    Grant, BF & Dawson, DA. J. Substance Abuse 1997;9:103-10.
  • Risk of Addiction
    • Half of binge-drinking male adolescents (17 to 20 y.o.) continue to engage in binge-drinking as adults (30 to 31 y.o.).
    • One third of binge-drinking female adolescents continue to engage in binge-drinking as adults.
    McCarthy, et al. Pediatrics , 2004. Vol. 14, No. 3: 714-719.
  • What Happens In College?
    • Myth: If a person waits until college to start drinking he'll (she'll) go over the top and have a major problem
    • Fact*: Binge drinking can either be acquired or avoided in college among students who report they did not binge drink in high school.
    • Fact**: Prior binge drinking in HS is a crucial factor in predicting binge drinking in college.
    *Weitzman, E., et al. Journal of Adolescent Health, 2003; 32;26-35. ** Wechsler, H., et al. American Journal or Public Health, 1995; 85; 921-926.
  • Associated Risks of Early Alcohol Use
    • 75% of teenage users of alcohol or tobacco had an opportunity to try marijuana by age 18 .
    • 25% of teenage nonusers of alcohol and tobacco had an opportunity to try marijuana by age 18.
    • Teenage users of alcohol or tobacco were approximately seven times more likely than nonusers to actually use marijuana once a marijuana exposure opportunity had occurred.
    Wagner, F. & Anthony, J. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2002; Vol. 155, No. 10 : 918-925
  • Start Talking Before They Start Drinking
  • Priorities For Parents
    • Remember – Can't choose for your child
    • Can set limits
      • Make it hard to make a poor choice
      • Let your child blame you
    • Be supportive of your child
    • Be proud of your child
  • Priorities For Students
    • Decide what is best for you
    • Be aware of the risks
    • Recognize that you are not indestructible
    • Look out for your friends
    • Respect yourself to protect yourself
  • Strategies To Use
    • Cell phone is your friend
      • Discreet signal system with parents or friends
    • Discreet excuses
      • Doctor's orders
      • Getting up early
      • Parent's are too suspicious
      • Parent's have insomnia
    • Drink look-a-likes
  • Resources www.stopalcoholabuse.gov http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/MakeADiff_HTML/MakeAdiff.pdf
  • Resources
    • http://www.squidoo.com/stopteendrinking
    • http://www.thegordiefoundation.org/home/default.asp
    • http://www.samspadyfoundation.org/links.html
    • http://www.collegedrinkingprevention.gov/OtherAlcoholInformation/makeDifference.aspx