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Talk to your teen about the dangers of texting behind the wheel

Mobile technology has contributed a slew of benefits to our 21st Century world, but the shift to cellular technology has come at a price. An average of 11 teens every day in the U.S. become another tragic statistic of texting while driving.

Teenagers aren’t known for restraint. The human brain needs two decades to fully mature. That’s why parents need to help young drivers understand a lackadaisical mindset could kill or main them for life.

Part of the problem, experts say, is our own lack of restraint as parents. Our cell phones feel like a third appendage. When we lose our phone, most of us keep reaching for it even when it’s not even there.

While we wouldn’t go so far as to compare texting behind the wheel as an activity equivalent to jumping out of plane without a parachute, it’s not farfetched to compare it to one of the more dangerous things a person can do! Enough data has now been compiled to sufficiently demonstrate that drivers cannot safely operate a vehicle and send and receive text messages at the same time.

What can you do as a parent? Parents must step up to the plate with a two-pronged strategy. First, parents need to set an example. If you the parent reach for your cellphone to send a text while the car is in motion, you are sending a message to teen drivers that it’s OK to text behind the wheel. Talk to your teen about the dangers of distracted driving. Set specific rules and enforce them. Looking for more ways to keep your teenager safe behind the wheel? Here are some great tips.