Do you know the harmful drinking patterns?
When we talk about harmful drinking patterns, different drinking patterns can be distinguished. Think, for example, of binge drinking, excessive drinking and heavy drinking. Every drinking pattern is associated with certain alcohol damage. In addition, drinking patterns can also differ per culture.
Heavy drinking is when at least four (for women) and six (for men) glasses of alcohol are drunk in one day at least once a week. Heavy drinking is related to an increased risk of direct or acute alcohol damage, such as alcohol poisoning, traffic accidents, aggression and an increased risk of brain damage.
Excessive drinking means that men drink more than 21 drinks a week and women more than 14 drinks a week. Long-term excessive alcohol consumption is related to damage to organs, increased risk of cancer and the development of addiction. Excessive alcohol consumption is particularly common among 18-25 year olds. However, it is also relatively common between the ages of 50 and 70.
Going out is expensive. Young people and young adults therefore like a 'drinking hour' - also called pre-loading - at someone's home. This saves money and puts you in a 'party mood'. Due to the imbibing, some of the partygoers already arrive in the catering industry under the influence. Because they participate in traffic under the influence, they run a higher risk of traffic accidents and the risk of drunkenness and alcohol-related aggression increases. Here we outline a general picture of pre-loading when there is no COVID-19 and the cafes and bars are open.
Impotence is closely related to binge drinking (drinking five or more alcoholic drinks before going out or before a home party). This drinking pattern is common among young people and is often associated with going out. If you binge weekly or more often, you are drinking heavily and the risk of damage increases.
Drinking patterns by culture
Drinking patterns can vary greatly by culture. In Europe alone, we notice major differences. The south of Europe can be characterized as a Mediterranean drinking culture, where alcohol is often drunk in combination with food, while the north and east of Europe has a strong vodka or binge culture. The Central European countries are more focused on drinking beer, but can certainly also be described as a binge-drinking culture.