Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Study Sheds Light On Excessive Drinking Among The Elderly

Date:
March 6, 2008
Source:
Brandeis University
Summary:
One out of 10 elderly adults on Medicare reports drinking more alcohol than is recommended, according to a new study. Nine percent engaged in unhealthy drinking -- consuming more than thirty drinks per month, or drinking four or more drinks on any day in a typical month.

One out of ten elderly adults on Medicare reports drinking more alcohol than is recommended, according to a new study from Brandeis University.

"Even though alcohol problems are more prevalent in younger people, a substantial proportion of older adults are consuming alcohol in amounts that exceed recommended guidelines," said study co-author Elizabeth Merrick, senior scientist at Brandeis University's Heller School for Social Policy and Management. The study sheds light on a complex problem that has received scant attention and is often missed by health care and other providers, she said.

Published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, the study evaluated data about 12,413 Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 or older. Merrick and her colleagues found that 9 percent engaged in unhealthy drinking--consuming more than thirty drinks per month, or drinking four or more drinks on any day in a typical month. The study, based on a 2003 Medicare survey, also reported that two-thirds of beneficiaries do not drink, while one-quarter drink within the recommended guidelines.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and the American Geriatrics Society, risky drinking among those 65 years and older occurs when a person consumes more than seven drinks per week or more than three drinks on a single day. OOther guidelines suggest that the single-occasion drink limit should be no more than two drinks, and that women should drink even lower overall amounts than men.

Merrick said some older people may not be aware that recommended limits are lower than for younger people. Older adults are more sensitive to alcohol and less able to metabolize it, both of which contribute to adverse effects at any level of drinking. Alcohol can exacerbate some medical problems, reduce a person's ability to function, increase the risk of falls, and negatively interact with medication.

"The relationship between alcohol consumption and risk is complex. Our study focused only on amounts of alcohol consumed. There are many people for whom lower amounts or even any amount of alcohol may constitute a serious risk because of specific medical problems or medication interactions," explained Merrick. "All of these factors must be taken into account, along with the perhaps more highly publicized benefits of moderate drinking for some people."

The study was funded by NIAAA.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brandeis University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Brandeis University. "New Study Sheds Light On Excessive Drinking Among The Elderly." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 March 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080305173347.htm>.
Brandeis University. (2008, March 6). New Study Sheds Light On Excessive Drinking Among The Elderly. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080305173347.htm
Brandeis University. "New Study Sheds Light On Excessive Drinking Among The Elderly." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080305173347.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) In a ruling attorneys for both sides agreed was a first of its kind, a Georgia appeals court said parents can be held liable for what kids put online. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) Researchers claim they’ve diagnosed the first example of the disorder in a 31-year-old U.S. Navy serviceman. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Confirmed Case Of Google Glass Addiction

First Confirmed Case Of Google Glass Addiction

Buzz60 (Oct. 15, 2014) A Google Glass user was treated for Internet Addiction Disorder caused from overuse of the device. Morgan Manousos (@MorganManousos) has the details on how many hours he spent wearing the glasses, and what his symptoms were. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins