Excessive drinking has become a large problem. Research indicates that 1/6th of Americans goes on a drinking binge four times a month, drinking an average of eight beverages in a few hours.
Who Binge Drinks
Founded on a survey of 457,677 Americans, results indicate that binge drinking is a problem for youth and for people beyond their twenties. Approximately 36 percent of binge drinking happens among ages 35 and older. Further, older Americans tend to binge drink more frequently than youth.
For example, approximately 13 percent of Americans between 45 and 64 say that they binge drink approximately five times per month, drinking about seven drinks per setting. Although only four percent of those 65 and older claim regular binge drinking, these adults drink excessively averaging 5.5 times per month, which makes this group the group that binge drinks most frequently.
Only 28 percent of those aged 18 to 24 report taking part in regular binge drinking, averaging four days per month in comparison. Young people drink the most per sitting, an average of 9.3 drinks, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Facts of Drinking
Dr. Robert Brewer of the C.D.C. says that more than the usual suspects are binge drinking. He reports that it is a problem for all ages.
Binge drinking is usually defined as five plus drinks per setting for men, and four plus drinks per setting for women within approximately two hours. At this level of drinking, one would expect that blood alcohol levels raise to and above .08, rendering binge drinkers legally impaired for driving.
Effects of Drinking
An alcoholic who drinks many glasses of wine during meals out or while at a party with friends, the thought of drinking four or five drinks during the evening may not seem excessive given the circumstances. However, Dr. Brewer states that a significant body of evidence indicates that drinking at those levels is associated with many health problems and hazards, including injuries, car accidents, violence, and a higher risk and likelihood of contracting an STI (sexually transmitted infection).
Dr. Brewer states that binge drinkers typically drink frequently and often drink more than the levels of what constitutes binge drinking behavior. Even for those who debate the definition of binge drinking, people exceed the level of the debate anyway.
How to Stop Drinking
For assistance and help to stop drinking, contact your local AA chapter.