New data reveals there was a 61.6% increase in alcohol-related A&E visits between 2006 to 2014. This data is surprising considering other data claims drinking rates increased by only 2% during the same period. Experts blame the increase in A&E visits on binge-drinking.
The data related to US-based hospital admissions.
According to this data, compared to 2006, 2014 saw a 61.6% increase in hospital admissions relating to alcohol consumption.
The data reveals this increase is disproportionately due to the number of women being admitted to hospital for injuries relating to binge-drinking.
Many of these women are said to have consumed more than 8 alcoholic drinks in less than two hours. This level of drinking would be considered ‘binging’ by anyone's standards.
Experts are at a loss when it comes to explaining why more women are actively engaging in binge drinking. Some experts say the increase in female binge drinking could be due to changing social norms, particularly because more and more women are choosing to juggle childcare with work.
Other experts say the increase could be due to changing attitudes towards female drinking. It’s never been more acceptable for women to drink alcohol, particularly compared to the past when female drinking was actively frowned upon.
The research reveals A&E visits amongst women for alcohol-related issues rose by 5% between 2006 to 2014.
For men, A&E visits rose by 4%.
Alcohol abuse is known to disproportionately affect men more than women, but this data proves this gender gap is beginning to narrow.
Another study published at Harvard illustrates that binge drinking increased by 3.7% each year between 1997 to 2014 for older women. There was no increase or decrease amongst men during this period.
Dr. Aaron White of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism said: 'We know that baby boomers, roughly aged 50 to 70, drink more than people older or younger than they are and this age group is growing in size.
'These changes probably contribute to the increase in alcohol-related A&E visits,' Dr White added.
The Harvard study is backed up by another study published in JAMA Psychiatry. This second study claims alcohol addiction amongst women increased by 60% between 2002 and 2013. During the same period, the study claims female binge drinking increased by 84%.
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