CHANGING TIMES: We're drinking more alcohol while the young ones are drinking less.
CHANGING TIMES: We're drinking more alcohol while the young ones are drinking less. g-stockstudio

Hey baby ! Lay off the booze

DRINKING at risky levels is on the rise among older Australians which isn't good health news.

Researchers from the Flinders University recently published their worrying findings in the Medical Journal of Australia.

They revealed there is a noticeable upward trend, with an estimated 400,000 older Australians already drinking at "potentially problematic levels".

Baby Boomers, born 1946 to 1964, are the troublesome ones.

In complete contrast, the researchers Professor Ann Roche and research officer Victoria Kostadinov found a "significant decrease in risky drinking among people aged 12-24 years during the same period".

A range of significant health issues can arise from this Baby Boomer trend  - falls, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, mental health problems, obesity, liver disease, and early onset dementia and other brain injury.

Of the four drinking levels identified - abstainers, low risk drinkers (no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion), risky drinkers (5-10 standard drinks on a single occasion at least once a month), and high risk drinkers (11 or more standard drinks on a single occasion at least once a month) - the high risk drinkers hit the top of the list.

These findings has the researchers recommending GPs counsel their clients to identify what is driving the change in drinking behaviour.

"Age-appropriate resources and techniques for clinical practice are also required for encouraging low-risk drinking in more vulnerable groups of older people, and for minimising the risks of alcohol-related harm," they added in their advice to GPs.


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