Receiving an underage drinking charge in North Carolina is a serious issue. Not only can such a charge result in legal trouble, it can also have a lasting impact on many facets of your child’s life. There are steps parents can take to prevent their kids from underage drinking in the first place, as explained by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Set a good example

Whether you know it or not, your kids look up to you. That means that if you exhibit problematic behavior when it comes to alcohol consumption, your child is more likely to follow suit. Never drink and drive and know when to seek help if you believe you suffer from dependency issues.

Offer support

Implementing and enforcing rules regarding alcohol consumption is crucial. While it may seem harmless to allow your kid a glass of wine or beer from time to time, doing so may encourage your child to drink in other situations. You should also strive to be active in your child’s life, whether that entails asking about his or her school day or getting to know close friends. In the same token, make sure you’re aware of where your child is going and with whom at all times.

Know the risk factors

Some kids have a greater risk of underage drinking than others. For instance, kids with depression or anxiety issues often try to self-medicate with alcohol. Peers can also have an influence on behavior, so be wary if your child is spending time with kids known to have drinking problems or skirmishes with the law. Also, if there is a family history of alcohol abuse, be aware that your child has a heightened chance of experiencing the same issues.