Evaluating the United States Minimum Legal Drinking Age: A Medical Review


  • Sehyun Jung Liberty High School
  • Chad Doty Liberty High School




Alcohol, Drinking Age, MLDA-21, Binge-Drinking


The Minimum Legal Drinking Age of 21 (MLDA-21) has been a source of contentious debate, enduring over a century of ethical and medical justifications. Critics cite the neurological and behavioral consequences of adolescent alcohol consumption to argue for the maintenance or even an increase from MLDA-21. Advocacy groups even propose mandatory training for adolescents in order to reduce harmful binge-drinking behavior. On the other hand, proponents of lowering the age limit argue that, ethically and politically, MLDA  must match the threshold of legal adulthood. They also claim that there are some scientific basis for lowering MLDA. However, this study that analyzed a wide breadth of scientific sources found that medical consensus validates MLDA-21. Studies find that the harms of adolescent alcohol consumption, including mental disorders, behavioral complications, and developmental consequences, outweigh the benefits of making alcohol more legally accessible.


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Author Biography

Chad Doty, Liberty High School


Mr. Chad Doty is the current English II and AP Seminar teacher at Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas. 

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How to Cite

Jung, S., & Doty, C. (2022). Evaluating the United States Minimum Legal Drinking Age: A Medical Review. Journal of Student Research, 11(2). https://doi.org/10.47611/jsrhs.v11i2.2570



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