SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Dutch teenagers are starting drinking alcohol later, reducing their chance of addiction in later life, newspaper Trouw reports.
Its evaluation of the Dutch alcohol policy with the Trimbos Institute, addiction institute Jellinek and the Dutch institute for alcohol policy, shows a sharp decline in the age teens start consuming alcohol.
Recent figures show that the number of 13-year-olds who said they had drunk alcohol at some point has gone down from 70 percent to 27 percent. The trend started in 2005 but accelerated after a 2013 ban on selling alcohol to people under 18, the organisations said.
In 2015 more than 45 percent of 15-year-olds said they had drunk their first drink. Now, this rate is 40 percent. Parents have also become more involved, the paper writes.
Over half of parents have said their children shouldn’t drink until they are at least 16. According to American research cited by Trouw, the later people start drinking alcohol, the smaller the chances of developing alcohol dependency at a later stage.
However, the teens who started drinking two years later than their peers caught up fast in terms of average consumption, while the number needing hospital treatment for alcohol poisoning is on the rise.
According to Trouw, most cases of alcohol poisoning concern teens from traditional Dutch backgrounds; those from different cultural backgrounds are in a tiny minority. (DutchNews)