Binge Drinking Is Bigger Problem Than Previously Thought
More than 38 million U.S. adults binge drink an average of 4 times a month, and the most drinks they consume on average is 8 according to a new Vital Signs report form the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While binge drinking is more common among young adults ages 18–34, of those age 65 and older who report binge drinking, they do so more often—an average of 5 to 6 times a month.
Binge drinking is more common among those with household incomes of $75,000 or more, but the largest number of drinks consumed per occasion is significantly higher among binge drinkers with household incomes of less than $25,000—an average of 8 to 9 drinks, the report said.
Binge drinking is defined as consuming 4 or more drinks for women and 5 or more drinks for men on an occasion.
In what states does binge drinking occur?
Adult binge drinking is most common in the Midwest, New England, the District of Columbia, Alaska and Hawaii, the report said. However, binge drinkers consume more drinks in the southern part of the Mountain states (Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah), the Midwest, and some states where binge drinking is less common—including Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina.
CDC scientists analyzed data on self–reports of binge drinking within the past 30 days for about 458,000 U.S. adults aged 18 years and older. The data were in the 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. The data used in this study included about 36,000 cell phone respondents.
Impact on future generations
“Binge drinking by adults has a huge public health impact, and influences the drinking behavior of underage youth by the example it sets,” said Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administrator Pamela S. Hyde. “We need to reduce binge drinking by adults to prevent the immediate and long–term effects it has on the health of adults and youth.”