Binge drinking


The analysis by gender and age

Group shows that 12.2% of boys and 8.4% of girls under the age of 18 are at risk, but the values ​​should be zero, while they identify over 400,000 children under the age of 18 at alcohol-related risk without gender differences.

The highest percentages of male consumers at risk are recorded in the 65-74 age group (42.9%) followed by that of over 75 years old (37.7%) for a total of approximately 2,100,000 elderly people aged 65 and over. years and over of male sex who would need an intervention of early identification and awareness of the problem of consumption beyond the recommended limits.

A different situation is recorded instead for the female population where the variability by age group is less relevant, with minimum values ​​recorded in the age group 45-64 years (Figure 2).

Prevalence (%) of consumers at risk by gender and age group (2012)

Source: ONA-CNESPS and WHO CC Research on Alcohol elaborations on data from the ISTAT Multi-purpose survey on families Figure 3 shows how over the last six years there has been a linear trend towards a decrease in the prevalence of at-risk consumers aged over 11 years of male sex (in 2012 -4.8 percentage points compared to 2007 and -2, 2 percentage points compared to 2011), while there were no changes among women compared to previous years.

Figure 3. Prevalence (%) of consumers (≥11 years) at risk by gender (2007-2012)

  • Source: ONA-CNESPS and WHO CC Research on Alcohol elaborations on data from the ISTAT Multipurpose Survey on Families
  • Binge drinking is a way of consuming alcoholic beverages that initially developed in the countries of Northern Europe, particularly among the young population, but is now very widespread in all European countries in the Mediterranean area, including ours.
  • In Italy, binge drinking is defined as the consumption of over 6 glasses of alcoholic beverages concentrated on a single occasion.

Prevalence (%) of consumers at risk by gender and age group (2012)Binge drinking is a drinking pattern that can expose people to immediate health risks as well as chronic harm.

The consumption of alcohol in excessive and concentrated quantities, especially among the very young, increasing euphoria and disinhibition, exposes to serious damage to the health of the individual due to intoxications that can cause memory lapses in the best of cases, headaches, severe nausea and increasingly episodes of ethyl coma.

Alcohol also causes disturbances in the emotional-relational interpersonal, work, family and affective spheres and damage due, for example, to road accidents or phenomena of violence, aggressive behavior or problems in social relationships often recorded in the younger population group.

Alcohol dependence syndrome (alcoholism) and related diseases

Alcoholic dependence is characterized by an obsessive behavior of compulsive seeking of alcoholic beverages and by addiction and tolerance (to achieve a certain desired effect one is forced to drink ever greater quantities of alcoholic beverages).

Also for alcohol addiction, as with any drug addiction, the abrupt cessation of alcohol consumption causes the withdrawal syndrome characterized by tachycardia, tremors, nausea and vomiting, agitation, hallucinations, convulsions.


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