The latest research is showing that Americans are taking to alcohol more than they ever did previously, which a very worrying trend.
It seems that the number of adult binge drinkers could be as high as 30 million people, which is astounding considering that the number is higher than most states population in America, according to a study published in JAMA Psychiatry. The study also shows that women have increased their alcohol abuse as opposed to men whose numbers have either dropped or stayed the same.
David Jernigan, director of the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, who was not a part of the research says: “This should be a big wake-up call. Alcohol is our number one drug problem, and it’s not just a problem among kids.”
There has also been data which shows a large increase in alcohol consumption for older demographics and those who have lower levels of education and lower income rates.
Bridget Grant, a researcher at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and lead author of the paper, says: ‘’The rise is “startling. We haven’t seen these increases for three or four decades.”
There doesn’t seem to be one, single explanation for this sudden increase, as far as the study could show. There were plausible economic stressors that were linked to increases after the Great Recession, including the easy availability of alcohol and lower alcohol taxes which could all contribute to it.
Marketing strategies are not to be forgotten in this as it could have been the driving force behind the increase in alcohol consumption in women and other demographics, according to Jernigan. Regardless of the reasons, the consequences are devastating. Deaths cause by drinking have gone up to 88,000 on a yearly basis between 2006 and 2010. This also includes drunk driving, liver damage and disease, strokes and other alcohol related conditions.