Baby boomers catch up with young people as problem drinkers of the country, as NHS figures reveal an increase in alcohol-related mental disorders in middle age
- Mental health problems related to alcohol have risen by 20% in middle age in the last five years
- Among those aged 15-29, those admitted to the same numbers have fallen by 7%
- Experts say that numbers indicate a growing generation gap in attitudes toward alcohol
- Younger people drink much less, while it is still central to their parents
Baby boomers are on track to catch up with young people as the problem drinkers of the country, NHS statistics suggest.
Hospital admissions for psychiatric disorders related to alcohol have risen by a fifth in middle age over the past five years, according to figures from NHS Digital.
Since 2013/14, the number of people over 50 admitted for addiction, memory loss and dementia with regard to drinking has increased by 21 percent.
Among the younger groups – those aged 15 to 49 – the number of admissions dropped by 7 percent in the same period.
Experts say the numbers indicate a growing generation gap in attitudes toward alcohol.
Hospital admissions for mental disorders related to alcohol have risen by a fifth in middle age over the past five years, according to figures compiled by NHS Digital (stock image)
Younger people drink much less than in the past, but alcohol is still a central part of their parents' generation.
The figures, analyzed by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, show that 30,642 people over 50 were admitted to hospital for psychological and behavioral disorders related to alcohol in 2018/19, compared to 25,288 five years earlier.
For those aged 15 to 49 there were 36,593 recordings last year, compared to 39,512 in 2013/14.
Dr. Tony Rao, from the addiction faculty of the Royal College, who reviewed the figures, said: & # 39; Younger people drink less and have a better understanding of their health.
& # 39; Baby boomers drink more than previous generations, but also appear to be unaware of the health effects of drinking.
& # 39; It is a manifestation of drinking culture in which people grew up in the 1950s, 60s and 70s, which many people still live with.
& # 39; That level of drinking is harmful in old age, when people's bodies cannot get rid of alcohol so quickly. & # 39;
Dr. Rao said the figures – which only apply to the most problematic drinkers – & # 39; just the tip of the iceberg & # 39; represent.
He pointed to a research paper that he would soon have to publish in the journal Advances In Dual Diagnosis, in which a study of 190 people over 65 showed that 22 percent had admitted binge drinking.
& # 39; People don't expect binge drinking among the elderly & # 39 ;, said Dr. Rao. & # 39; It is something that has gone completely unnoticed. & # 39;
Younger people drink much less than in the past, but alcohol is still a central part of their parents' generation (stock image)
While teenagers were once considered Britain's largest drinkers, experts today worry more about middle-aged, middle-class people – especially women – who order wine at the supermarket and drink at home.
Katherine Severi from the Institute of Alcohol Studies said: “The figures clearly show that the negative effects of drinking are a growing problem for middle-aged and elderly people throughout the country.
& # 39; In addition to the increase in cancers and strokes, psychological disorders related to alcohol are another area where the influence of elderly drinking on their health becomes too strong to ignore. & # 39;
She pointed to figures published in Scotland last week that showed that the minimum unit price was adopted – a move avoided in England – has successfully reduced drinking and called on Westminster to consider the policy.
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