Reuters (9/21, Harding) reports that a study published online Sept. 21 in Pediatrics found that girls who enter puberty early are far more likely to abuse alcohol as teens if their parents don’t supervise them. Dr. Brett Laursen of Florida Atlantic University in Fort Lauderdale and colleagues followed 957 girls from a Swedish town over a four-year period.
They found that while alcohol abuse increased among all girls as they grew older, the levels of autonomy granted by parents among on-time and late-maturing girls did not correlate with the rates of alcohol abuse. However, for the early-maturing group, the latitude of autonomy was significant.
The study found that early-maturing girls with strict parents had an 84 percent increase in alcohol abuse from seventh to tenth grade, while alcohol abuse increased by 234 percent among girls given the most autonomy.
— “Watchful parents help early-maturing girls avoid alcohol abuse,” Anne Harding, Reuters, September 21, 2015.