A New York doctor says the US Centers for Disease Control report showing excessive alcohol use accounts for one in 10 deaths among working-age adults nationwide is a stark reminder for people to pay attention to their alcohol consumption.
The new study analyzed deaths that were attributable to alcohol among those ages 20 to 64 years, and approximately 70 percent were men. Heavy regular drinking and binge drinking was responsible for approximately 88,000 death per year, and cut lives short by as many as 30 years, according to the study.
“Heavy drinking can be a serious problem and many people don’t realize how much they are drinking and it is a concern,” according to Scott Krakower, DO, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at The Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, NY.
Some of the deaths studied were due to long-term effects of chronic alcohol use at a rate of 15 or more drinks a week for men and eight or more drinks a week for women, CDC researchers noted.
Dr. Krakower notes that other deaths were associated with binge drinking, which would be about five or more drinks at one time and four or more for women.
“Alcohol use is linked to acute problems such as severe aggression and motor vehicle accidents and can lead to health issues such as heart disease, liver conditions and cancer,” he says.
“If someone is going to drink,” Dr. Krakower stressed “to be mindful, limit your consumption, drink slowly and substitute alcohol for an alternative drink like club soda.”
The doctor says there are many resources available to help people stop drinking – a family physician, Alcoholics Anonymous and several outpatient facilities.