America’s Got Binge Drinking!
Drink Responsibly? Almost half of all American adults do anything but, swigging back mind-bending quantities of alcohol, a new investigation finds.
To make issues even worse, most problem drinkers cannot stop, despite understanding all of the risks associated with booze consumption.
Analysts at Boston, MA Academy just examined information on over 35,000 Americans who carried out two nationally-administered alcohol usage surveys in the early part of this century.
Men and women
The first study asked individuals whether they consumed excessive amounts of alcohol; for males, this was thought of 14 drinks per week or four or more in one session, and for females, 7 drinks per week, or three or more in one session.
Several years later, participators were once more questioned about their drinking patterns.
The analysts found that a full 41 percent of participants were heavy drinkers at the study’s outset, 74 per-cent of whom continued to drink over the advised limit for years later.
An additional 15 percent of participants became heavy drinkers actually throughout the period of the study, the analysts reported.
“Some individuals simply stop binge drinking on their own. However, most people proceed with this destructive behavior for years before they get the wake-up call.
“Public health and medical messages around drinking need repeating, particularly in young adulthood. Once is simply inadequate.”
Respondents who started consuming alcohol in excess were predominantly young people, a lot of whom had just turned twenty-one years old.
Additional demographic aspects tied in with developing alcohol-related issues included being Caucasian, a man, tobacco-dependent, and having a history of substance use.
Ways to minimize binge drinking
Regarding how to minimize “binge” drinking there is a variety of what are called “Protective behavioral strategies.”
Among these are learning how to regulate your drinking and remaining well hydrated. A great way to achieve both of these traits it to order a non-alcoholic beverage (water or soft drink) with your alcoholic drink or to alternate between both kinds of beverages.
This decreases your drinking, reduces the amount you are drinking and reduces the absorption of alcohol into your system. Regularly purchasing food when drinking additionally decreases the ingestion rate for the alcohol.
Of course, none of these self-created ‘rules’ will really make a great deal of difference to the alcoholic or problem drinker.
When a drink is not a drink
Drinkers are advised to be aware of what a standard alcoholic beverage size is and keep an eye on how many you have consumed.
Standard alcoholic beverage sizes as specified by the National Precept of Alcoholic Abuse and Alcoholism is 12 fluid ozs of lager, 5 fluid ozs of red or white wine, and 1.5 fluid ounces of alcoholic spirits.
A person consuming 3 16-oz pints of lager/beer assumes they just consumed three beers but based upon the conventional alcoholic beverage standard (which is how alcoholic drinks are determined in the binge drinking research) they really drank 4 lagers/beers (48 fluid ozs).
And a warning about something many men and women believe is a protective behavior strategy when drinking alcohol but is not really is consuming energy drinks together with or mixed with alcoholic drinks.
Energy drinks may add to the problem
This is not a good thing to do because, contrary to common belief, energy drinks do not decrease the effects of alcohol on a person.
The high levels of caffeine in them mask the effects of booze, in particular, the sedative effects. By keeping the individual roused and active longer, but still just as drunk.
The complication in this is that given that the individual stays more alert and buzzed up for longer they literally consume alcohol much more than usual. Which puts them in greater danger for alcohol-related issues such as physical violence, risky sexual actions, DUI, and so on.
Research has shown that when consuming liquor blended with energy drinks individuals respond more quickly but they still do it in an uninhibited intoxicated manner.
Dumb & dumber
So using energy drinks when consuming alcohol is not a great way to protect yourself from the negative effects of excessive alcohol consumption.
All that having been said it is worth noting that having the create rules and systems around your drinking is a warning sign in itself. The need for rules indicates control of your drinking has been lost.
The definition of a problem drinker is someone who can’t control how much or how often he/she drinks.
If you are worried about your binges and want to learn how to stop drinking without any of the typical challenges. Click here to reserve your place on the next free quit drinking webinar with Craig Beck.