Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Truth about Binge Drinking Revealed; Study of Young Adults Shows Worrying Signs

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Truth about Binge Drinking Revealed; Study of Young Adults Shows Worrying Signs

Article excerpt

Byline: Helen Rae

THE stark facts of binge drinking among the North East's young adults has been laid bare by an alcohol awareness charity. Nearly half of 18 to 24 year olds in the region go out drinking with the sole intention of getting drunk, according to new research by Drinkaware.

Despite this intention, more than two-thirds regret their drunken behaviour, which includes not knowing how they got home, having a one-night stand and ending up in hospital.

Last night, alcohol misuse experts in the North East said they were committed to tackling the region's binge drinking culture.

Colin Shevills, director of Balance, last night called for stronger laws to tackle teenage drinking.

"Changing attitudes and behaviour is a long-term commitment and the next step is to use these findings to develop a greater understanding of why people drink and what would encourage them to reduce their consumption. Regional research we conducted last year reveals that 49% of 18-24 year-olds in the region drink to get drunk.

"We have also discovered that other big motivations include alcohol providing confidence and relieving boredom. The majority of this age group say their decision to drink more is based upon price. We need greater legislation if we are serious about tackling the problems caused by alcohol misuse.

"We know today's young men are drinking twice as much as their grandfathers did - and one of the main reasons is that alcohol is cheaper now than ever before. Introducing a minimum price per unit of alcohol would tie price to alcohol strength, having a big impact on cheap, strong alcohol traditionally consumed by younger and heavier drinkers".

Dr Meng Khaw, director of public health for North Tyneside, said: "We need to do all we can to raise awareness about the dangers and serious health implications of drinking too much alcohol. "Changing binge drinking behaviour is difficult as it is part of the culture of young adults, but it is something that must be tackled."

The report's findings are part of Drinkaware's 'Why Let Good Times Go Bad?' campaign, run in partnership with more than 40 companies from across the drinks industry and Coca-Cola Great Britain. …

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