Adolescent Alcohol Consumption: Brain Health OutcomesHenk FJ Hendriks1* and Ilse C Schrieks2,3
- *Corresponding Author:
- Henk Hendriks
Consultant for The Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research
Laan van Cattenbroeck 70, 3703 BP Zeist, Netherlands
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: July 07, 2015 Accepted Date: August 31, 2015 Published Date: September 04, 2015
Citation: Hendriks HFJ, Schrieks IC (2015) Adolescent Alcohol Consumption: Brain Health Outcomes. J Child Adolesc Behav 3:238. doi:10.4172/2375-4494.1000238
Copyright: © 2015 Hendriks HFJ, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Adolescents consume alcohol in moderation mainly to enjoy and enhance mood but adolescents also drink hazardously, e.g. to cope with stressful life events. Drinking hazardously may be related to the developing adolescent brain going through a number of structural and physiological changes. These structural and physiological changes affect adolescent behavior aimed at gaining experience in life. Adolescent drinking patterns vary and may include risky behaviors such as binge drinking. Motivations to drink and risk factors for binge drinking and alcohol abuse are both internal and external. Internal risk factors include amongst others genetic predisposition to have less self-control, whereas external risk factors includes early life stress. Integrative approaches underline the value of multi-domain analysis for prediction; any one feature in isolation only modestly predicts drinking behavior. Health consequences of drinking vary widely depending on dose and drinking pattern. Moderate alcohol drinking may be associated with a lower incidence of chronic disease and mental health, whereas alcohol binging and abuse appear to negatively affect social functioning mainly in the short term and mental and physical health in the long term. Resilience towards behaving non responsibly may best prevent alcohol abuse and stimulate enjoyment of moderate alcohol consumption. Limitations in current knowledge concern the interpretation of alcohol drinking being the cause for adolescent risky behavior, generalizability of findings on abusing adolescents to the general population and insufficient knowledge of relevant covariates and mediators.