There is not a class of society that does not suffer from alcoholism. From the richest to the poorest, to all those in between, alcoholism is a clear and present danger!
Older Vs. Younger
While older people claim to feel more in control when they have had a drink, they actually find it harder than young people to abstain from alcohol in social situations.
A study which examined the drinking habits of a group of people aged between 35 to 50, found that they caused less social disruption when they were drunk than the younger generation.
But they also felt it was harder to say no to their friends even when they did not want to drink.
A study conducted by the Medical Research Council, found that many middle-aged drinkers would invent excuses in an attempt to cut down on their intake.
Some middle-aged women admitted feeling so pressured into drink that they sometimes lied about dieting in order to avoid it.
In addition both sexes admitted driving to dinner parties in order to remain teetotal.
Scientists questioned 36 people aged 35 to 50 from eight friendship groups in Scotland and found that half were exceeding the recommended weekly limits of 21 units for men and 14 for women.
A large glass of wine equates to around three units of alcohol, while a pint of strong lager can contain as much as four units.
Six people were drinking harmful amounts, meaning more than 50 units for men or 35 for women, according to the study published in the Sociology of Health & Illness journal.
What Study Shows
This intriguing study illuminates what is often an invisible problem. While excessive drinking in young adults often leads to visible disruption in our towns and cities, older adults tend to drink behind closed doors where their behavior is hidden from society.”
When it comes to alcohol consumption, middle aged drinkers like to think they are ‘older and wiser’ than they were in their 20s. Initially, people in the focus groups stated they had moderated their drinking with age and singled out youthful binge drinking as a problem for society. However, as the discussions progressed, stories of recent heavy drinking contradicted these claims.
Adults find it harder to turn down drinks in social situations than younger people, reflecting that heavy drinking remains the norm in middle age, she added.
"The approaching festive season could make it especially hard to stay in control of alcohol consumption in social situations.”
Figures published earlier this year suggested that middle-class drinkers were at more risk of dying from alcohol as they got older than those in lower socio-economic groups, because they often fail to realize they are drinking to excess.
A study from the Office for National Statistics found that the highest earning members of society put themselves at greater risk in their old age because they were unable to quantify what constituted heavy drinking.
Deaths resulting directly from alcohol have doubled in England and Wales since the early 1990s from 3,415 in 1991 to 7,344 in 2008.
The figures dropped off slightly to 7,099 in 2009 but alcohol related conditions are still estimated to account for seven per cent of all hospital admissions.