Studies Show More Americans Engaging in Excessive Alcohol Use While Under COVID-related Restrictions
Research is producing a clear trend – Americans were drinking more during the COVID-19 pandemic. Stress, economic instability, isolation, and an uncertain future may have all played a role in the increase in drinking. For many, it wasn’t just a few more beers than normal during the shutdown. Unhealthy drinking habits such as binge drinking emerged.
Drinking large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time can have long-lasting harm and even cause death. As Healthline reports using a study from the RAND Corporation, binge drinking “spiked considerably since the pandemic began.” According to the study, the frequency of drinking “increased 14 percent overall as well as 17 percent amount women.”
The heavier drinking reported during the pandemic hit women harder than men. There was a 41 percent increase in heavy drinking among women during the pandemic. People between the ages of 30 to 59 were also more likely to have increased drinking since the start of COVID.
All of this points to a substance use crisis sparked by the pandemic. Experts believe that there may be a very real alcohol dependency problem developing across the country with few people seeking treatment. In pre-pandemic times, Alcohol Use Disorder affected millions of people in the United States with only a small portion ever seeking treatment. Many fear that it will only get worse.
It is vital to seek professional help if you have developed an unhealthy relationship with alcohol or have started drinking more and cannot cut back or stop. There are treatment options available during these difficult times.