Legal drinking age of 21 saves lives - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Legal drinking age of 21 saves lives

Updated: Feb 24, 2014 09:49 AM
© Wavebreak Media / Thinkstock © Wavebreak Media / Thinkstock
  • SPONSORED BY SOUTHEAST HEALTHMore>>

  • BJC changes charity care standards

    BJC changes charity care standards

    Sunday, April 20 2014 1:01 PM EDT2014-04-20 17:01:10 GMT
    Charity care has long been a core mission of BJC HealthCare, but the St. Louis area's largest employer is cutting back amid increasing financial pressures.
    Charity care has long been a core mission of BJC HealthCare, but the St. Louis area's largest employer is cutting back amid increasing financial pressures.
  • Clock ticking for states to adopt health exchanges

    Clock ticking for states to adopt health exchanges

    Friday, April 18 2014 2:39 PM EDT2014-04-18 18:39:20 GMT
    More than 30 states that defaulted to the federal government to run their health insurance markets under President Barack Obama's health care law must decide if they want to take a crack at it themselves. Time...
    More than 30 states that defaulted to the federal government to run their health insurance markets under President Barack Obama's health care law must decide if they want to take a crack at it themselves. Time is...
  • Blood test aims to predict breast cancer's return

    Blood test aims to predict breast cancer's return

    A new blood test may one day help predict the recurrence of breast cancer and also a woman's response to breast cancer treatment, researchers report.
    A new blood test may one day help predict the recurrence of breast cancer and also a woman's response to breast cancer treatment, researchers report.

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A legal drinking age of 21 saves lives. And demands by some to lower the age limit should be ignored, a new review says.

Researchers examined studies conducted since 2006 and found that a minimum drinking age of 21 is associated with a reduced rate of drunk driving crashes among young Americans. That age limit also lowers young people's risk of other health threats associated with heavy drinking, such as dating violence, unsafe sex and suicide.

One study found that in 2011, 36 percent of U.S. college students said they'd gone binge drinking (five or more drinks in one sitting) within the past two weeks. That compared with 43 percent of college students in 1988, the first year that all states had a legal drinking age of 21. The decrease in binge drinking among high school seniors was even larger, from 35 percent to 22 percent.

The review was published in a special supplement in the March issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

"The evidence is clear that there would be consequences if we lowered the legal drinking age," lead researcher William DeJong, of Boston University School of Public Health, said in a journal news release.

In recent years, some groups have been trying to get the drinking age lowered. One argument used by proponents of a lower legal drinking age is that many young people break the law and drink anyway.

But these new findings show that an age-21 drinking law does have a positive effect, said DeJong, who added that tougher enforcement of the limit, not a lower legal drinking age, is what's needed.

Studies have shown that student drinking declines when college towns boost enforcement of the law and warn students about the crackdown.

"Some people assume that students are so hell-bent on drinking, nothing can stop them. But it really is the case that enforcement works," DeJong said.

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism has more about alcohol policy.

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow

310 Broadway
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701

FCC Public File
publicfile@kfvs12.com
573-335-1212
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and KFVS12. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.