Binge Drinking Definition – Everything You Need To Know

New Life Medical Addiction Services Marlton New Jersey

Many people ask the doctors and health care professionals at New Life Medical Addiction Services what their binge drinking definition is. In this post we tell you everything you need to know about this dangerous way to consume alcohol.

The binge drinking of alcoholic beverages is, unfortunately, a very common and highly dangerous practice. In fact, binge drinking is the MOST dangerous way to consume alcohol according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (The CDC).

Binge drinking is as a pattern of alcohol consumption that elevates a person’s blood alcohol level to 0.08 g/dl or above. This typically happens when a man consumes 5 or more drinks, or a woman consumes 4 or more drinks in a 2-hour period.

There is a distinct prevalence of binge drinking by age group as shown in the chart at right by the CDC. This graph depicts the percentage of the total U.S. population, from high school up, who report that they engage in binge drinking. The percentage value for each category are as binge drinking definitionfollows:

  • high school students (grades 9-12) = 17.7%
  • Ages 18-24 =1%,
  • Ages 25-34 = 25.7%
  • Ages 35-44 = 19.6%
  • Ages 45-64 = 13.7%
  • Ages 65 plus = 4.6%

It is estimated that one in six US adults binge drinks about four times a month and consumes approximately seven drinks per binge drinking event. This results in 17 billion total binge drinks consumed by adults annually, or 467 binge drinks per binge drinker per year.

Binge drinking is most common among younger adults aged 18–34 years, but more than half of the total binge drinks are consumed by those aged 35 and older. Furthermore, binge drinking is twice as common among men than among women with four in five total binge drinks being consumed by men.

Binge drinking is most prevalent among people with household incomes of $75,000 or more and higher educational levels. However, binge drinkers with lower incomes and educational levels, however, consume more binge drinks per year.

Of concern is the fact that 90% or more of American’s over 21 years of age who drink excessively report that they have engaged in binge drinking in the past 30 days and the majority of people younger than age 21 who drink alcohol report binge drinking, often consuming large amounts at a time.

The risks of binge drinking cannot be overstated. According to the same Centers for Disease Control study, there are approximately 2,200 alcohol poisoning deaths annually in the U.S. and many of these are associated with binge drinking incidents. Some of the deaths involving fraternity hazing are due to this. The good news is that deaths from binge drinking are preventable.

The physicians and staff at New Life Medical Addiction Services know that binge drinking is related to or is the cause of many significant health, social and mental problems including:

  • Alcohol addiction and alcohol use disorders.
  • Bodily harm or death from falls, car crashes, burns, and alcohol poisoning.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and liver disease.
  • Violence including murder, suicide, rape, sexual assault and partner violence.
  • Unintended pregnancy and reduced pregnancy outcomes, including miscarriage and stillbirth.
  • Fetal alcohol disorders.
  • Sudden infant death syndrome (S.I.D.S.)
  • Cancers including of the breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon.
  • Memory and cognitive problems.
  • Depression and other mental disorders.

Beyond the physical and mental tolls that binge drinking results in, the cost of excessive drinking in the U.S. is estimated to be in excess of $400 billion annually. These costs resulted from losses in workplace productivity, health care expenditures, criminal justice costs, and other expenses. It is further estimated that binge drinking is responsible for 77% of these costs.

Click here to read more of the CDC studies that detail the costs and impacts of binge drinking on Americans.

To speak to someone at New Life, call us at: 856-942-3700 or send us a Text Message.

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