When Did the Legal Drinking Age Change from 18 to 21

According to federal data from the 1830s, the average American consumed 7.1 gallons of alcohol per year, more than 3 times the current average of 2.3 gallons per year. According to Bruce Bustard, senior curator of Spirited Republic: Alcohol in American History, “We think it`s an incredible amount — you might think people would staggered while intoxicated, but most people could manage their alcohol because it was integrated into everyday life.” Late 1960s and 1970s: lowering of the drinking age. In the late 1960s and 1970s, nearly all states lowered the drinking age to 18. This led to a dramatic increase in alcohol-related car accidents, and drunk driving was considered a public health crisis. In the mid-1970s, 60 percent of all road deaths were alcohol-related, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH). More than two-thirds of car accidents involving people aged 16 to 20 were alcohol-related. Yes. Injuries caused by alcohol use among adolescents are not inevitable, and reducing adolescent access to alcohol is a national priority. Despite these improvements, too many teenagers still drink. In 2012, 42% of Grade 12 students, 28% of Grade 10 students, and 11% of Grade 8 students reported drinking alcohol in the past 30 days.

In the same year, approximately 24% of Grade 12 students, 16% of Grade 10 students, and 5% of Grade 8 students reported excessive drinking in the past two weeks. The Legal Drinking Age (MLDA) sets the legal age at which a person can purchase alcoholic beverages. The MLDA in the United States is 21 years. However, prior to the passage of the National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984, the legal age at which alcohol could be purchased varied from state to state.1 The minimum drinking age in Alberta, Manitoba and Quebec is 18. Canada`s other provinces and territories allow the legal purchase of alcohol at age 19. Since then, some states have proposed legislation to lower the minimum drinking age to 18, but with little traction. Germany is one of the most interesting countries when it comes to the minimum drinking age. It has one of the lowest minimum drinking ages in the world, allowing teenagers to drink alcohol at the age of 14 if accompanied by an adult. The drinking age has been raised to 21 due to federal funding for highways.

Health experts cite evidence that the age of 21 is necessary to protect young adults from alcohol dependence. States that have raised the minimum drinking age to 21 have seen a decrease in the number of car accidents. This is a major concern among public health officials, as late adolescence is one of the most important stages of cognitive development. The brain undergoes significant restructuring and specialization during this period, including the elimination of unnecessary neural connections and the refinement of connections between frontal-subcortical brain regions. Research shows that drinking alcohol, especially through excessive alcohol consumption, before the brain fully matures, can permanently damage the brain and hinder cognitive development. In the years following the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, alcohol consumption fell by 19 per cent among 18- to 20-year-olds and by 14 per cent among 21- to 25-year-olds. This was particularly interesting because research has shown that most minors report that alcohol is “fairly easy” or “very easy” to obtain. When it comes to alcohol, even small behavioral checks seem important, Glasner-Edwards says. “If it takes more effort, it saves the person some time to think about how important it is for them to drink at that time or to consider the possible negative consequences of alcohol consumption,” she explains. “It seems that these barriers are significant for young people to benefit from these minimum age laws.” The CDC still calls underage drinking “a public health concern.” Mexico earns millions of dollars from its tourism industry. If you are traveling there with your family, think about the age of alcohol consumption and the penalties that can result from breaking the law.

Alcoholic beverage means beer, distilled spirits and wine containing half a percent or more alcohol by volume. Beer includes, but is not limited to, ale, lager, porter, stout, sake and other similar fermented beverages brewed or produced in whole or in part or from a substitute.