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Holidays Often Linked to First-Time Alcohol Use
Updated December 28, 2015 4:54 AM | Filed under: Health
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(UNDATED) - Research indicates you should think twice before letting your teens take a sip of your alcoholic beverage over the holidays.

Experts say the fight against underage drinking starts at home with how parents handle the situation.

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health the holidays are the prime time for youth experimenting with alcohol.

Randy Haveson, an addiction expert and author of "Party with a Plan" says, reducing use among youth starts at home.

"I find that a lot of parents still have the idea that 'oh, they're just teenagers of course they're going to experiment' and it really takes the parents toeing the line more and not allowing their kids to get away with this," he added.

According to the report, more than 11,000 youth a day will drink alcohol for the first time in December, June and July - the peak months for first-time users.

Research shows that alcohol can have a long-term impact on a teen's brain, preventing the parts of the brain that make good judgement and encourage impulse control from fully developing. Havenson says the brain isn't fully developed until age 25.

"Study after study shows that the earlier someone begins to drink or do other drugs, the more chance they have of developing a problem," Havenson added.

Haveson suggest talking early and often with your children about alcohol use, explaining why they should abstain and being careful not to glorify your own adolescent years if you partook.

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