New polling suggests Australians are getting worried about what’s happening with their household drinking as the COVID-19 pandemic rolls on.
Alcohol sales are way up, along with accompanying health concerns.
The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) commissioned YouGov Galaxy to conduct the poll of a nationally representative sample of 1,045 people over 18 years of age.
Key findings include:
- 70% of people are drinking more alcohol than usual
- 32 percent are concerned about how much the people in their household are drinking
- 28% are drinking to cope with anxiety and stress, and the same number are drinking on their own more often
- 24% are drinking more than they planned to
- 20% are starting drinking earlier in the day
FARE CEO Caterina Georgi said ‘increased drinking by people worried about COVID-19 might be good news for alcohol industry executives, but it’s certainly worrying news for our community’s health.’
The FARE poll was conducted early in April, and there are concerns the situation might have worsened since then.
Ms Georgi said governments need to act ‘to address the alcohol industry’s aggressive marketing practices, place limits on late night and rapid online alcohol product delivery, boost funding for alcohol and other drug services, and provide messages to the public on how to reduce the risks from drinking alcohol as part of their current health campaigns.’
To drink or not to drink?
Have you been self-medicating to deal with the added stresses of home-schooling, sudden unemployment and being unable to go out normally? Alcohol has a complex relationship with brain chemistry but as far as anxiety is concerned, it can actually make things worse.
That’s because it reduces the amount of anti-diuretic hormones, meaning it lets your body rid itself of more water than normal. This can lead to faintness, dizziness and confusion, all of which lead to anxiety as the body tries to protect itself from harm.
Feelings of drowsiness and sickness are signs your body is releasing cortisol to defend itself. Water between alcoholic drinks is needed to counter this.
So if you’re drinking more, don’t forget to drink!