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Alcoholism Statistics

Alcoholism statistics encompasses data pertaining to who is addicted to alcohol, how their alcoholism affects their life and those who are close to them as well as how alcoholism affects society as a whole. In order to fully appreciate alcoholism statistics lets review what the term alcoholism means. Alcoholism is when the body becomes physically dependent on alcohol. It is a chronic long-term problem that many people struggle with for years, or even their entire lives. A person who suffers from alcoholism becomes obsessed with alcohol and feels as though they have no control over how much they drink. Their drinking typically comes before their personal health and it creates problems in their home life. It often causes the alcoholic to have serious issues at work or even to lose their job.

A majority of society is able to drink alcohol responsibly. They will consume alcohol in social situations and continue on with their day to day life with their alcohol use causing damage to themselves or those around them. On the other hand, some people are not able to stop or control their alcohol use. For these individuals, what was once a social experience becomes a way of life. Recent data from the National Institutes of Health reports that 15% of the people living in the United States are considered “problem drinkers.” Of this 15%, 5%-10% of the males and 3%-5% of the females could be labeled as alcoholics. Another study found that approximately 30% of people in the U.S. report experiencing an alcohol disorder at one point in their lifetime. Researchers from the University of California in San Diego have found that the lifetime risk of alcohol-use disorders for men is greater than 20%. They share that there is a risk of around 15% for alcohol abuse and 10% risk for alcohol dependence.

Alcoholism statistics from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism show that the age of a person’s first alcoholic drink may determine their likely hood in becoming an alcoholic. It has been found that those who had their first alcoholic drink before they were 15 were much more likely to have a problem with alcohol later in life than those who abstained until a later age. Information from the World Health Organization shows that there are an estimated 140 million alcoholics around the world! Recently, a study conducted in Canada on alcoholism statistics showed that 1 in 25 deaths around the world can be attributed to alcohol in one way or another. On a positive note, experts estimate that around 30% of people who have problems with alcohol (not severe alcoholics) are able to reduce their alcohol consumption or abstain completely from alcohol without receiving professional help.

The harmful effects of alcoholism also have an impact on current alcoholism statistics. It is estimated that close to 30% of all males in their teens and twenties have experienced a blackout due to overconsumption of alcohol. Today’s stats show that nearly 2 million Americans suffer from alcohol related liver disease. Cirrhosis of the liver affects nearly 20% of all heavy drinkers/alcoholics. Alcoholics are 10 times more likely to develop infections, cancer and problems with platelets and blood clotting.

Alcoholism has a negative effect on society as a whole. Research has shown that alcoholism plays a major role in aggression with as many as 40% of all aggressive incidents involving alcohol in one way or another. 22% of the police’s time is spent on cases involving alcohol such as violence on the streets or domestic violence while under the influence. Employers also suffer due to their employees alcohol problems. Approximately 13% of all employee sick days are alcohol related. Data also shows that employees who have problems with alcohol produce at least 10% less work then their co-workers.

An article from the American Journal of Public Health notes that easy access, in this case cheap prices, is a contributing factor in the development of alcohol related problems and deaths due to alcohol. Researchers studying the data from the state of Alaska discovered that there was a strong link between alcohol tax increases in 1983 and 2002 and a substantial drop in alcohol related deaths. The increase in alcohol taxes proved to be 2 to 4 times more effective than other more traditional prevention strategies (i.e. media campaigns about alcoholism and school programs).

Drinking and driving is one of the most serious problems on our roads today. Recent data shows that nearly 40% of all traffic-related deaths are related to alcohol. Alcoholism statistics on drunk drivers show that drinking and driving results in 1 injury every minute and 1 death every 32 minutes. Drunk drivers are costing the United States approximately 50 billion dollars every year. Alcohol costs so many so much; their health, family, friends and their community.

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  • Alcohol Facts
  • More than 1 in 10 Americans aged 12 or older in 2001 (25.1 million persons) drove under the influence of alcohol at least once in the 12 months prior to the interview. Between 2000 and 2001, the rate of driving under the influence of alcohol increased from 10.0 to 11.1 percent. Among young adults aged 18 to 25 years, 22.8 percent drove under the influence of alcohol.
  • Alcoholic hepatitis can cause death if drinking continues. If drinking stops, the condition may be reversible.
  • Certain driving skills can be impaired by blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) as low as 0.02 percent.
  • More than 2 million Americans suffer from alcohol-related liver disease.