The teen years are a time of rapid growth, exploration, and risk taking. Taking risks provides young people the opportunity to test their skills and abilities and discover who they are. But, some risks—such as smoking, using drugs, drinking and driving, and having unprotected sex—can have harmful and long-lasting effects on a teen’s health and well-being.
Parents are a powerful influence in the lives of their teens. When parents make a habit of knowing about their teens—what they are doing, who they are with, and where they are and setting clear expectations for behavior with regular check-ins to be sure these expectations are being met—they can reduce their teens’ risks for injury, pregnancy, and drug, alcohol, and cigarette use. These parents are monitoring their teens’ activities and behavior.
To learn more about how parents can better monitor their teens, CDC sponsored a panel of leading academic researchers in the field of parental monitoring. The findings from this expert panel led to the development of a book entitled, Parental Monitoring of Adolescent: Current Perspectives for Researchers and Practitioners.
The following information reflects key findings and recommendations from this book.
Monitoring Your Teen’s Activities: What Parents and Families Should Know