UK: Alcohol Harm Growing Among Older People
Older people are increasingly using alcohol in order to cope with life difficulties including retirement, bereavement and loneliness, a new report found.
The study also shows that people 50 years of age and older were turning to alcohol due to feeling like a failure, depressed and downhearted. The research highlighted that these factors have led one in five to use alcohol as a solution to their problems. People who suffered from these issues are four times more likely to become a high-risk alcohol consumers.
For the study, high-risk was defined as consuming more than 50 units weekly for men, or 35 units for women. The alcohol consumption guidelines from the Chief Medical Officer in the United Kingdom have since been lowered to 14 units for both men and women.
The findings were based on data from almost 17,000 people, making it the biggest ever study on alcohol use habits of people over the age of 50.
The report called on the UK Government to try and tackle the alcohol problems, after finding the National Health Services spends more on alcohol treatment for 55 to 74-year-olds than for 16 to 24-year-olds.
A worrying 83% of the respondents who used more alcohol than the weekly limit, said they had never been told to cut down by friends or loved ones.