Alcohol causes significant harm to those other than the drinker

“Each year, one in five U.S. adults — an estimated 53 million people — experience harm because of someone else’s drinking, according to new research in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

Similar to how policymakers have addressed the effects of secondhand smoke over the last two decades, society needs to combat the secondhand effects of drinking, the authors state, calling alcohol’s harm to others “a significant public health issue.”

According to the study — an analysis of U.S. national survey data — some 21% of women and 23% of men, an estimated 53 million adults, experienced harm because of someone else’s drinking in the last 12 months. These harms could be threats or harassment, ruined property or vandalism, physical aggression, harms related to driving, or financial or family problems. The most common harm was threats or harassment, reported by 16% of survey respondents.”

Read more from Alcohol Research Group (USA, July 2019)

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