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UK CHILDREN AGED 12, ABUSING ALCOHOL?

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LONDON, U.K - Some children as young as 12 were found to be drinking the equivalent of 19 glasses of wine a week. Most were drinking at home, or in the homes of friends or relations.
The study by the Schools Health Education Unit, based at Exeter University based on data collected from more than 83,000 children aged between ten and 15, found four per cent of children aged 12 or 13 had drunk 28 units or more of alcohol in the week before they were questioned — exceeding government limits for adult men, who can safely drink three to four units a day.
  • Simon Antrobus, chief executive of the charity Addaction, which helps people with drug and alcohol problems, said: "These new figures back up our own experiences. We know children who drink at younger ages are the ones who need help most. We also know that children whose parents misuse alcohol are more likely to develop their own problems later in life."
  • The figures also disclose that by the age of 11, at least one in three girls wanted to lose weight, rising to two thirds at the age of 15. By that age, a third had skipped breakfast on the day they were questioned, and of those, one quarter had missed lunch the previous day.
  • Among boys, fear of violence was a prime concern; one in five said they sometimes carried weapons for protection. Girls were more likely than boys to express fears about bullying. One third of girls aged ten and 11 were frightened to go to school because of bullying on some occasions, though they became less afraid as they got older.
Dr Laura Wyness, a senior nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation, said young girls often employed unhealthy methods in an attempt to reduce their weight, with some taking up smoking, while others who cut back too drastically missed out on protein, iron and other vital nutrients.
The study also found that many children were too tired to stay alert at school.
Source: Agency
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