Top 5 Oral Habits Your Teen Should Stop Doing Right Now


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Alcohol and Drug Use

If every teen flick ever made is to be believed, someone in school is having a big party this Friday night -- and there will be lots of beer. While high school life is hardly a John Hughes film, the presence of alcohol is a reality. Due to its accessibility, it's the drug of choice for the teenage set, and it's often consumed in excess. In fact, almost 8 percent of teens admit to binge drinking [source: Dryden-Edwards].

It may sound a bit after-school special of us, but we'd be remiss if we didn't reiterate the potential dangers of teenage drinking, which include alcoholism, binge drinking, alcohol poisoning, experimentation with other drugs, increased likelihood of unprotected or casual sex, impaired judgment, trouble at school, depression, and increased risk of automobile accidents and other harmful situations.

While drinking is the most common oral high teens pursue, it's not the only one. Other substances your child may abuse include prescription medications and easy-to-get illegal drugs like marijuana, ecstasy and meth. Many of the dangers of drinking -- like addiction and impaired judgment -- also apply to drug abuse. However, some of these substances can also cause drug interaction, change in appearance, anxiety, cardiac and circulatory disruptions, suicide and coma. So if you suspect drugs or alcohol are one of your child's oral habits, now is the time to intervene.

The following oral habit may not be immediately life-threatening; but it has the potential to create long-term health problems.