Two teens from Hadera area drink themselves unconscious

“I expect that this is just the beginning,” says Hillel Yaffe pediatric department director.

June 28, 2010 04:42
1 minute read.
FLOURISHING STIGMA. ‘There’s no real difference to

alcohol teens 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

The school holiday has only begun for teenagers, but two have already drunk enough alcohol to lose consciousness and be taken to Hillel Yaffe Medical Center in Hadera, according to Dr. Adi Klein, director of its pediatric department.

“I expect that this is just the beginning,” said Klein. Overdrinking is increasingly common during the school vacation and in general among young people, she said Sunday. Because their bodies are smaller than those of adults, the alcohol works faster on their neurological system.

“When a young person drinks a lot at once, he will be more affected than an adult who got used to doing so over the years,” she said.

The central nervous system develops over one’s lifetime and exposure to alcohol at and from a young age adversely affects it.

While children and teenagers lose their self-control and get confused from overdrinking like adults, said Klein, the effect can be even more dangerous because it can lead to behavior that they would never have adopted, such as taking hard drugs or reckless sexual behavior.

Some youngsters who drink to a state of unconsciousness stop breathing or need an infusion of liquids. This is what happened to the two youngsters who reached Hillel Yaffe in the past few days. If the alcohol poisoning is only moderate, its influence dissipates during the first 24 hours. Only in extreme cases does the unconsciousness continue beyond a full day, she said.

Klein advised parents to keep watch on their teens during the summer vacation even though they are likely to get up late and know what they are doing and where they are going. If the child is very confused or loses consciousness, get him or her to the emergency room right away.

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