Dept. of Public Health: 16% of Iowa 8th graders drank alcohol - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dept. of Public Health: 16% of Iowa 8th graders drank alcohol

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WATERLOO (KWWL) - The Iowa Department of Public Health has new statistics on underage drinking in the state during Alcohol Awareness Month.

The IDPH says alcohol is the most commonly used and abused drug among youth nationally and in Iowa.

Sixteen percent of eighth graders in Iowa report drinking alcohol before turning 13 years old, and more than one in four high school juniors have tried alcohol in the last 30 days.

The IDPH says alcohol use among youth can cause health and social problems, and can even lead to death.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that use of alcohol and other drugs is second only to depression and other mood disorders as the most frequent risk factor for suicidal behavior.

April of 2014 is being recognized as Alcohol Awareness Month by the IDPH's Division of Behavioral Health and the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence.
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