WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA)--One in three children starts drinking by the end of 8th grade. This is according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Of these kids, half say they have gotten drunk.
READ: 9News Now Coverage Of Underage Drinking
Beth Kane Davidson, Director of the Addiction Treatment Center at Suburban Hospital, says it is important for parents to take the issue of underage drinking very seriously. She also advises parents to talk with their children early and often.
Davidson, along with some help from students and parents, came up with this list of questions parents need to ask before their kids leave the house to visit friends:
- How many people are going with you?
- How do you know these people?
- Do you know the people well?
- Are they on a provisional?
- Do their parents abide by the provisional rules?
- Have you been there before?
- What is the phone number?
- How many people will be involved in the gathering?
- Do you know these people well?
- Do you anticipate people who are not invited showing up?
- Do you have any concerns?
- Is there a theme for the get together?
- Will you be indoors or outdoors?
- Is there a possibility of a change in plans?
- What time will you leave?
- What time will you be home?
- Have you given us enough time to call the parents and discuss the plan?
Davidson says, "Monitoring is never easy. Remember the end statement from your kids will be 'Thanks.'"