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Binge drinking a problem for older adults too (Reuters Health)

Posted Aug 17 2009 10:08am
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Binge drinking is usually seen as a problem of college campuses, but many older adults may be overindulging in alcohol as well, a study published Monday suggests.

Using data from a government survey of nearly 11,000 Americans age 50 and up, researchers found that 23 percent of men between the ages of 50 and 64 admitted to binge drinking in the past month, as did roughly 9 percent of women.

Among adults age 65 and older, more than 14 percent of men and 3 percent of women reported bingeing -- defined as having five or more drinks on one occasion, on at least one day in the past month.

Alcohol binges are often considered a problem of youth. One recent government study found that among U.S. college students between the ages of 18 and 24, 45 percent reported a recent drinking binge.

But the new findings, published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, show that older adults can be susceptible too.


For more information on substance use in the 18-25 year-old population, visit SAMHSA or Maine's own "How U R" (a resource for anyone interested in learning more about how substance abuse impacts the LGBTI community) at

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