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Teenagers and the dangers of alcohol



Wednesday 24th January

10:00 am to 12:00 pm

in Mayfair

Price Member (please login) £20
Price Non-Member £60


DATE & time

Wednesday 24th January

from 10:00 am to 12:00 am


Morton’s Club

28 Berkeley Square


London W1J 6EN


Adolescence is a time of trying new things, including alcohol. But countless studies have shown that parents have significant influence over the attitude and relationship their child develops with alcohol.

Dr Aric Sigman has worked with the European Parliament, the NHS, The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. He wrote, among other books, ‘Alcohol Nation: How to protect our children from today’s drinking culture’.

He will expose the risks of alcohol for teenagers and tell us about the strategies to help our children avoid the risks of alcohol use.



Dr Sigman has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Psychology, a Master of Science degree in The Neurophysiological Basis of Behaviour, and a Ph.D. in the field of the role of attention in autonomic nervous system self-regulation. Dr Sigman works independently in health education lecturing at medical schools including UCL and to NHS doctors. He is a Chartered Biologist, Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, Chartered Psychologist, Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society, a Chartered Scientist awarded by the Science Council and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine. He is a peer reviewer for the medical journal Acta Paediatrica. The International Child Neurology Association scientific committee invited him to address the recent International Congress of Child Neurology on ‘Risks to children’s brain development today: screen dependency disorders’. His new paper ‘Screen Dependency Disorders: a new challenge for child neurology’, is a narrative review and detailed expansion upon that lecture, published in the Journal of the International Child Neurology Association.

Dr Sigman’s biology paper on body image was selected as the ‘2012 Scientific Article’ for the Biology A-level exam (Paper Ref: 6BI05/01). His health education book Getting Physical won The Times Educational Supplement’s Information Book Award.

The British Medical Association British Medical Journals’ Archives of Disease in Childhood published his paper on screen time as its Leading Article. His recent paper on screen dependency was published in Britain’s Royal College of General Practitioners’ British Journal of General Practice.

A recent article on the role of play in paediatric outcomes and disease prevention is published in the specialty group of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health’s BACCH News: Annual Scientific Meeting Special Issue.

Dr Sigman has twice been invited to address the European Parliament Working Group on the Quality of Childhood in the European Union, in Brussels, once on the impact of electronic media and screen dependency, and again on reducing alcohol misuse among children and adolescents. The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health invited Dr Sigman to speak on Alcohol and Electronic Media at its Annual Conference in 2012, at a clinical and scientific session on Young Persons Health.

Also in 2012, the EU Parliamentary Working Group published his report on the impact of electronic media and screen dependency, and has recently published his second report on Preventing Alcohol Misuse Among Children and Adolescents in the EU. On several occasions, he was invited to speak to scientists at the European Space Agency on screen time and other health education subjects.

Dr Sigman lectures on PSHE health education and talks to schools and parents on the effects of alcohol and other health issues, and he has written the Brain and Behaviour column for The Times Educational Supplement.

Scotland’s national Violence Reduction Unit invited Dr Sigman to speak to the nation’s police at their conference: Alcohol – fuel for violence? He was a keynote speaker at two Department of Health NHS conferences on alcohol: the North West Alcohol Conference 2011 and the North East Alcohol Office conference ‘Calling Time on Second Hand Harm’. In 2012 he was invited by the Ministry of National Education to address the First International Congress of Technology Addiction in Istanbul.

Dr Sigman’s has published a book, Alcohol Nation (see below), and his biology paper, A Source of Thinspiration?, on the biological aspects of media, body image and dieting, was published in The Biologist, the Journal of the Royal Society of Biology.

Dr Sigman has worked on health education campaigns with the Department of Health and acted as advisor to the Institute of Personnel Management on health and psychology issues. He conducts seminars and public speaking. Dr Sigman’s previous books include The Spoilt Generation and Remotely Controlled: How Television is Damaging Our Lives.

Dr Sigman has published other papers. Well Connected?: The Biological Implications of ‘Social Networking’, is published in The Biologist, Vol 56(1), the journal of the Society of Biology.
Note: This paper has been misrepresented by some news reports, websites and bloggers as claiming that social networking causes cancer or disease. This is not true. The paper addresses the extent to which time online may be displacing face-to-face contact, and that lack of social connection is associated with physiological changes, increased incidence of illness and higher premature mortality.

His paper Visual Voodoo, on the potential biological effects associated with excessive television viewing, also published in The Biologist, and his talk at the Houses of Parliament, caused widespread public debate. Dr Sigman has also written and presented scientific documentaries for BBC1 and Radio 4 on the scientific basis of faith; the biology of ‘hypnosis’; and on the effects of too much choice, and for Dispatches on Channel 4 on the potential hidden detrimental effects of moderate dieting.
 He was invited to speak at the Edinburgh International Festival and to debate at an event held by the Spectator at The Royal Institution.

Dr Sigman comes from a medical family of three generations of professors of surgery. His grandfather was a professor of urology and his father was Dean of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine. One of his brothers is Chairman of the Division of Urology at Brown University Medical School in Rhode Island, Professor of Surgery, Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Chief of Urology at its teaching hospitals. Another brother is a professor at Columbia University in New York, where he is Director of the Center for Applied Probability and Director of Undergraduate Programs.

Dr Sigman travels abroad frequently to observe various cultures, often volunteer teaching. Countries include North Korea, Turkmenistan, Republic of Congo, Bhutan, Mali, Borneo, Tonga, Myanmar (Burma), Irian Jaya (West Papua), Laos, Iran, Vietnam, Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Far Eastern Siberia, Sumatra, South Korea, Cambodia, Chile, Philippines, Jordan, Mongolia, Japan, China and India.