Women and Alcohol
- Women absorb alcohol into the bloodstream faster and metabolize it slower than men.
- Women who drink regularly are at significantly greater risk for liver damage than men even if they drink less or drink for a shorter period of time.
- Women develop alcoholic liver disease after a comparatively shorter period of heavy drinking and at a lower level of daily drinking than men.28
- Proportionately more alcoholic women die from cirrhosis than do alcoholic men.27
- The odds of women experiencing sexual aggression were nine times higher on heavy days of alcohol consumption compared with days of no alcohol consumption.1
- There is a greater incidence of alcohol misuse in women with eating disorders, especially bulimia, than in the general population.2
- Girls who start dieting in sixth grade are more likely to engage in alcohol misuse later in life.2
- A growing body of literature shows that substance abuse among women and the issues surrounding their abuse differ from that among men.3
Alcohol and Athletic Ability
- Moderate use (2-3 drinks) can results a loss of motor coordination for up to 12 to 18 hours after drinking.4
- Moderate use (2-3 drinks) can also result in depleted aerobic capacity and negative impact on endurance for up to 48 hours after the last drink has been consumed.4
- Alcohol consumption by college students is linked to at least 1,400 student deaths and 500,000 unintentional injuries each year.5
- Evidence links a high proportion of deaths from falls, fires and burns and drownings to drinking.9
- Various studies estimate that between 13% and 63% of falls are alcohol related.9
- A common cause of fire among intoxicated people is falling asleep or passing out before extinguishing a cigarette.9
- Alcohol use is implicated in one-third of drownings.9
- 8% of all ER visits each year for illness or injuries are associated with alcohol.6
- Alcohol or other drugs was a factor with 75% of the men and 55% of the women in reported acquaintance rapes on college campuses.
- Alcohol is the number one date rape drug.
- More than three-quarters of female victims of nonfatal domestic violence reported that their assailant had been drinking or using drugs.7
- Alcohol does not relieve depression - it makes it worse.
- Tolerance is the lessening of the effectiveness of alcohol after a period of prolonged or heavy use.
- Tolerance means you may not feel the same effects of alcohol as you continue to use, but your blood alcohol concentration level may remain high.
Alcohol and Depression
- One third of suicides are associated with alcohol misuse.
- Approximately 5% of college students report experiencing poor mental health and this coincides with a high risk for alcohol abuse.8
- Ages 18-24 coincides with the peak years for onset and intensification of the most common mental health problems among youth - including alcohol abuse.9
Alcohol and the Body
- Alcohol goes directly to the bloodstream, which is why it effects every system in the body.
- Excessive drinking can decrease the amount of testosterone in a man's body and cause impotence.
- Alcohol is a nervous system depressant.
- Alcohol is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream from the small intestine, and less rapidly from the stomach and colon.
- A pulse rate lower than 40 is a medical emergency. Call 911!
- A respiration (breaths) rate lower than 8-10 per minute is a medical emergency. Call 911!
- A daily glass of wine will add 10 pounds per year.
- The peak Blood Alcohol Level occurs 60 to 90 minutes after ingestion when the stomach is empty.
- The presence of food in the stomach slows the rate of alcohol absorption. However the amount of alcohol absorbed remains unchanged.
- Vomiting is part of the automatic defense system of the body activated to prevent more alcohol from being absorbed.
- When a person's blood alcohol level ranges from .02 g/100ml to .08 g/100ml he/she usually has a change in mood and may have trouble interpreting what he/she sees and hears.
- Birth control pills slow down the rate at which alcohol is eliminated from the body
- If someone passes out and will not respond to attempts to wake them, it is very possible they are suffering from alcohol poisoning.
- Several factors influence how alcohol will affect a person: age, gender, physical condition, amount of food eaten and other drugs or medicines taken.10
- The path of alcohol in the body is the mouth, stomach, small intestine, heart, brain and the liver.6
- Individuals with the same weight, but different muscle builds will differ in their BAC.
- Individuals with more muscle are less affected by alcohol because the muscle contains water that absorbs the alcohol from the bloodstream.
- Premenstrual hormonal changes cause a faster increase in BAC during the days right before a woman gets her period.
Chronic Alcohol Use
- Chronic alcohol use can damage the frontal lobes of the brain.6
- Chronic alcohol use can cause an overall reduction in brain size.6
- More than half of current drinkers have a family history of alcoholism.11
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
- Pregnant women who drink risk having babies with fetal alcohol syndrome.
- Babies born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome have: smaller heads and brains, some degree of mental retardation, poor coordination, hyperactivity and abnormal facial features.6
- 10% of alcohol health care costs are for care of fetal alcohol syndrome.9
Adult Drinking Behaviors
- Binge Drinking is more common in men than in women.
- Six in 10 U.S. adults were current drinkers in 1999-2001 and about 1 in 4 were lifetime abstainers.12
- Nearly one-third of adults were classified as light drinkers (3 or fewer drinks per week).10
- Nearly 5 percent of adults were classified as heavier drinkers (7 or more drinks per week for women; 14 or more for men).10
- About 20 percent of adults had 5 or more drinks per day at least once in the past year.10
- Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is the amount of alcohol present in the blood when consuming alcohol.13
- A blackout is an amnesia-like period that is often associated with drinking. A person may be functioning normally, but later, the person has no memory of occurrences.8
- During a blackout, an individual can participate in a significant, emotionally charged event but have no recollection of what occurred.14
- When blood alcohol levels rise slowly, people are less likely to experience blackouts, even if they eventually become intoxicated.12
Alcohol Beverage Facts
- Most wine coolers have the same amount of alcohol as a 12-oz. beer.
- One 12-oz. beer, one 5-oz. glass of wine and one 1.5 oz. shot of liquor have the same amount of alcohol.
- Ethanol or Ethyl Alcohol - Beverage alcohol is produced by fermenting or distilling various fruits, vegetables or grains.
- In addition to being a depressant, alcohol is a chemical solvent, a local anesthetic and an irritant.
- Alcohol is found in many beverages, also in many prescription and non-prescription drugs.
- Recent studies show that after six months, treatment for alcoholism is successful for 40 to 70% of participants.15
- Substance abuse treatment is less expensive than the alternatives, such as incarceration.16
- More than 18 million people who use alcohol need substance abuse treatment.9
- Overall, fewer than one-fourth of those needing treatment for substance abuse get it.9
Alcohol and Advertising
- The alcohol industry spent more than $1 billion on television, radio, print and outdoor advertising in 1997.8
- The total number of alcohol ads on network, local and cable television increased to 289,381 in 2002, a 39% hike from 2001.13
- Spending for alcohol ads on T.V. by the alcohol industry grew by 22%, to more than $990 million in 2002.13
- Youth 12-20 were more likely on a per capita basis than adults to have seen 66,218 alcohol ads, a 30% increase over 2001.13
Youth and Drinking
- One third of all twelfth graders have been drunk in the past 30 days.
- Among high school seniors, whites are most likely and blacks least likely to be heavy drinkers.17
- Nearly four out of every five students (77%) have consumed alcohol by the end of high school.26
- In 2003, more than half (58%) of 12th graders reported having been drunk at least once in their life.26
- In 2003 the proportion of 12th graders who admitted drinking an alcoholic beverage in the past 30 days was 48%.26
- Binge drinking rates peaked in 1979 and were lowest in 1992.26
- Perceived availability of alcohol by 12th graders has remained very high at 95%.26
- The age of 19 to 24 is associated with the highest prevalence of periodic heavy alcohol consumption during the life span.18
- On average, college students may drink on fewer occasions than their noncollegiate peers, but they drink heavily on a more frequent basis than nonstudents.16
- College athletes tend to drink more than peers who are not involved with campus-based sports.17
- In terms of size, students at smaller colleges tend to drink more than students at larger schools.17
- The number of college students who do not drink has increased to approximately 20%.19
- Approximately one in three 18-to-24-year-olds admitted to emergency rooms for serious injuries is intoxicated.17
- About one-half of all fatal traffic crashes among those aged 18 to 24 involve alcohol.17
- The perception that alcohol use is socially acceptable correlates with the fact that more than 80% of American youth consume alcohol before their 21st birthday.20
- In a recent study, 31% of students met criteria for a diagnosis of alcohol abuse and 6% for alcohol dependence in the past 12 months.21
- Members of fraternities and sororities tend to drink more than students who do not participate in the Greek system.17
- A study recently revealed that heavy drinking among members of Greek organizations does not generally lead to increased alcohol use later in life.22
- 30% of students who drank in the past year said they had driven after drinking alcohol during the past 30 days.21
- Rates of heavy alcohol use are highest among those with less than a college degree.9
- Alcohol is often not thought of as a drug.
- Alcohol is the #1 misused drug in the U.S.
- Poor judgement is a natural outcome when the brain is influenced by alcohol.
- One third of homicides are associated with alcohol misuse.
- One half of car accidents are associated with alcohol misuse.
- In 1998, 83% of adults surveyed said that adults who illegally give alcohol to minors should be penalized.23
- Alcohol and drug abuse are factors in the placement of more than three-quarters of children entering foster care.9
- In 1996, six million children under age 18 lived with a parent who was dependent upon alcohol.9
- Health care costs attributed to alcohol abuse in 1995 were nearly twice those of drug abuse-related costs ($23 billion vs. $12 billion). 9
- Deaths from alcohol use highest for black males, though white males are more likely to drink.24
- Heavy alcohol use is relatively more common among people living in small metropolitan areas than in large metropolitan areas and non-metropolitan areas.9
- Heavy drinking is highest among those living in the North Central region of the U.S.9
- Many states hold the sellers or servers of alcohol partly liable for alcohol's consequences.9
- In 2000, state beer excise taxes ranged from $.02 (Wyoming) to $.92 per gallon (Hawaii).25