Saturday, October 23, 2010

What's Driving Baby Boomers to Drink?

Kids, depression, loneliness, anxiety, divorce, grief, feeling unworthy....these are just a few of the reasons that may explain why more and more baby boomers and the elderly are turning to the bottle to drown their sorrows. Alcoholism is on the rise for some in this age group.

Of course, the average person who may have a drinking problem probably isn't going to admit it. They would rather call themselves a "social drinker"--which means their doctors may be none the wiser--even though it presents an escalating health risk as we age. The theory, Don't Ask and I Won't Have to Lie , probably rings true for many.

According to an article in the Los Angeles Times earlier this year, a new study found that among men and women 50 to 64 years old, almost 1 in 4 men and 1 in 10 women were described as a "binge" drinker - meaning that at some point in the last 30days, he or she has downed four (for women) or five (for men) servings of alcohol in a single two-hour sitting. This is defined as the amount needed to attain a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 (the level at which most states consider a driver intoxicated).

So instead of asking, "What's in your wallet?"---someone might ask, "What's in your liquor cabinet?"