We've all been asked the question "if your friends jumped off a cliff, would you do so too?" Usually this is asked after doing something that probably was not too well thought out, but luckily resulted in only minor injuries if any. Well, it turns out that sometimes that herd mentality can be used for good and not always stupidity.

In a recent study which took place over a two year period, it appears that targeted programs for youth at high-risk for binge drinking problems can help curb that problem and lead to a "herd" effect that also reduces peers likelihood to do so. The program took place in schools in which staffs were trained in personality-based intervention techniques to adolescent students. While the program targeted those youth at high risk of addictive behaviors and mental health problems, the results had a beneficial effect on other students that the program was not geared towards.

The program assessed the students over six month intervals for signs of drinking, binge drinking, and problem drinking. It was directed to students who suffered from one of four high-risk behavior or mental health disorders. Those high-risk profiles were (1) anxiety sensitivity, (2) hopelessness, (3) impulsivity, and (4) sensation seeking.

It is hoped that programs such as this can help curb the likelihood of drinking problems as the youth grow older and reduce the number of DUIs. Perhaps this kind of intervention can help reduce Colorado's increased incidents of DUI as discussed in January 11th's blog post titled "Colorado's DUI arrests increase by 39 percent in 2012."

If your child makes you crow the typical line after adolescent behavior and impulsiveness drives them to take an unnecessary risk, remember that there are means for them to grow out of it and they often will. If they don't, there are programs out there to help them through their problems and/or addictions. If somehow they became entangled with the law as a result of their behavior, please contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. A lawyer will be able to ensure that your youth's rights and legal options are protected to the fullest in their situation.

Source: medpagetoday.com, "Targeted Program Curbs Teen Drinking," Kristina Fiore, Jan. 25, 2013