The What About YouTH Survey has been released in the United Kingdom. Affluent teens twice as likely to use alcohol regularly, study finds. Middle-class parents warned against introducing children to alcohol at home as survey shows proportionally fewer teens from lower socio-economic classes continue using alcohol.
Middle-class parents who introduce their children to alcohol with a glass of wine at family dinners will not protect them from developing alcohol use disorders public health experts warn, as a new study provides the evidence: affluent teens were twice as likely to regularly use alcohol compared to those teens from poorer backgrounds.
The Health and Social Care Information Centre conducted the study of 120,000 teenagers in the United Kingdom.
- About 70% of 15-year-olds from the least deprived backgrounds had tried alcohol, compared with approximately half from the most deprived.
- Just over three in five young people reported they had previously had consumed a whole alcoholic beverage, defined by the survey as ”not just a sip”, with the richest 15-year-olds twice as likely to be regular users.
- White teenagers were far more likely to have consumed an alcoholic beverage than those from a black and minority ethnic background, as more than 70% from a white background had used alcohol compared with just over a quarter of BME teens, though religion is likely to be a major factor in that statistic.
- Teenagers from well-off families are also more likely to continue using alcohol after first trying alcohol.