By On February 16th, 2009

Binge drinking a problem among active military personnel…

According to a study recently published by the University of Minnesota and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), binge drinking is a common problem among active military personnel, which results in job performance issues as well as impaired driving. The study examined 16,037 active duty military personnel; 43 percent reported binge drinking within the past month. Binge drinking was defined as four or more drinks at one sitting for females and five or more drinks at one sitting for males. Around two-thirds of those that reported binge drinking were ages 17 to 25. “Our study clearly shows that binge drinking is a significant public health problem in the military, which is dangerous to both the drinkers and to those around them… It also underscores the importance of implementing effective strategies to prevent underage and binge drinking, such as maintaining and enforcing the age 21 minimum legal drinking age and increasing alcohol excise taxes,” said Mandy Stahre, M.P.H., author of the study. The following is an excerpt of an article from Medical News Today that discusses the study:

The study analyzed data from 16,037 active-duty military personnel who participated in a 2005 Department of Defense Survey of Health-Related Behaviors among Military Personnel. Binge drinking is defined as consuming four or more drinks on one occasion for a woman or five or more drinks on one occasion for a man. It was reported by 43 percent of active-duty personnel during the past-month, resulting in a total of approximately 30 million episodes of binge drinking or roughly 30 episodes per person per year. About two-thirds of these episodes were reported by active-duty personnel who were 17 to 25 years of age at the time of the survey, including 5 million episodes that were reported by active-duty personnel who were under 21 years of age.

The researchers also found that alcohol-related problems were reported by more than half of all active-duty personnel who reported binge drinking, and that compared to non-binge drinkers, binge drinkers were more than six times more likely to report job performance problems and about five times more likely to report driving after having too much to drink.

Click here to read the rest of this article from Medical News Today

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