Dr. Timothy Silvestri, the coordinator of drug and alcohol services at Lafayette College in Easton, conceded that a lot of popular anti-drinking strategies don't work.
said experience has proven a number of ways that turn minors away from drinking.
Sticking with the facts and approaching young people one-on-one are among them.
"We can no longer say this is a complex problem with no easy solutions, in my opinion," Silvestri said. "We have the ways to achieve success. We just have to implement them." > > Silvestri
gave a continuing-education workshop Wednesday for professional counselors and therapists at Indiana University of Pennsylvania
spoke on "Best Practices to Reduce High-Risk Behaviors" in conjunction with the Mid-Atlantic Addiction Research and Training Institute
, known as MARTI.
For the record, Silvestri
said, putting up a poster that says "Just Say No" doesn't work, when it's the only strategy used.
"Challenging positive expectations," is one that works, Silvestri
said.That's getting an abuser to honestly reflect on whether getting drunk felt good.
Another is asserting the true norm.The conventional wisdom that "all students drink" and "kids will be kids" aren't the norms, Silvestri
"We're talking about maybe a quarter to one-third who are high risk, problematic," Silvestri
said."They're a loud group and they make a lot of trouble for folks.But the vast majority of college students don't drink a ton or drink at all."
A teacher, who flippantly suggests to a classroom full of sluggish students on a Monday morning that they "must be hung over from the weekend," doesn't help the cause, he
offered a dramatic strategy in his
lecture - a series of PowerPoint slides that color-code the sections of the brain affected step by step during a session of binge drinking.
"At this point you're like a squirrel out running through the park," Silvestri
Convincing youths to stay sober - or giddy, at worst - requires a combination of intrinsic and extrinsic sources of motivation, Silvestri
The intrinsic ones are minors' evaluating their expectations of alcohol, or becoming "media literate" and recognizing the subconscious effects of advertising and pop culture.
Extrinsic motivations are the consequences of young drinkers' experiences.
"A letter home to their parents.Probation at the college, things like that," Silvestri