Monday, February 7, 2011

Schools Using Breathalyzers to Fight Teen Drinking

With instances of drunk driving on the rise amongst vulnerable teens, more and more schools are relying to Breathalyzers to facilitate the detection of alcohol consumption.

The deployment of Breathalyzers seems to be a last resort for many schools as to put an end to illegal alcohol consumption especially that of which is consumed on school premises during activities sponsored by the school itself.

Many schools reserve the right to administer Breathalyzer tests when there is sufficient evidence suggesting individual is under the influence of alcohol. The evidence generally consists of a list of symptoms an intoxicated individual would display once under the influence. Speech impairment and slurring, bloodshot and dilated eyes, unsteady walking, profane personal conduct, agitated demeanor and erratic behavior are all signs of intoxication. This test is performed by a trained school administer, and for confidentiality purposes, it is performed individually and away from the presence of other teens. Once the teen is suspected of being under the influence, he/she will be asked to perform a Breathalyzer test in which the individual has a right to refuse. Upon refusal, he/she will automatically be denied entry to school event, and parents are immediately notified.

Many schools have strict policies concerning the results of Breathalyzer tests, most of which conclude removal of student from extracurricular activities and suspension, all of which have undeniably detrimental consequences for the individual.

The use of Breathalyzer doesn’t seem to “sit well” with young, na├»ve teens who believe they are capable of handling alcohol like adults. Across the nation, teens are indoctrinated and often the target of mass media that for many years now has been very successful in encouraging alcohol consumption by promoting it via movies, video games and other forms of entertainment that generally appeals to young adults. In many cases, alcohol is portrayed as the only way to forget about ones everyday problems, a sign of “maturity”, an instant mood booster and a way take advantage of the opposite sex. Many teens succumb to the peer pressure surrounding alcohol, sabotaging their lives as well as the lives of their loved ones.

The adoption of Breathalyzers is in no way intended to humiliate, discriminate and demean the already sensitive adolescent, but to demonstrate needed authority that for years seemed to be “toned down” and often ineffective.

The message is clear. Illegal consumption of alcohol by minors is prevalent during many school function, dances, proms and other school sponsored social events and therefore each and every individual will be subjected to a Breathalyzer test in which they will either pass or fail. No exceptions will be made and harsh consequences await advantageous teens.

In summary, “underage drinking” or alcohol use is a common occurrence in the lives of most young adults under the age of 21. Breathalyzers will help school authorities keep alcohol use in school grounds in check, and help prevent accidents, as about 45 percent of fatalities in crashes involve young adults under the age of 21 who is driving under the influence.

Parents should be wary as early use of alcohol can turn into abuse and addiction. If your teen is struggling with alcohol abuse?

Reach out to us. Recovery from addiction is just a click or a phone call away. If the information you are looking for is not found here and you need immediate attention you may contact us:

Teen Addiction Help: 1-888-757-6237

Addiction Treatment for Young Adults and Adults : 1-888-387-6237

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