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Alcoholism and its effects...continued


Medication: People who take alcohol should be cognisant of the dangers if they are on medication. Checks should be made as the two will interact and the effects of the alcohol can be changed.

Young people: This group is drinking more alcohol and drinking more often. They are the heavier drinking section of the population. They start at about 12 years of age and by 15 most youngsters have tasted it. 12% of the 16-19 year olds show signs of alcohol dependency.

Health: One in four males admitted to hospital have an alcohol-related problem. Deaths from liver disorders are ten times greater in heavy drinkers than in non-drinkers.

Driving: 1 in 7 of all road deaths are alcohol related. It is an offence to drive with more than 80mg per 100 ml of blood in the system.

Family: 30% of child-abuse cases are alcohol related and 40% of domestic violence also. Separated and divorced men seek solace above the average drinker.

Crime: Research has shown that 30% of sexual offences are alcohol related; burglaries 33%, street crimes 50%, pubs and clubs 85%, murders 65% and stabbings 75%.

Industry: Employers report that 75% of problems at work are alcohol related as are 25% of workplace accidents. Up to 14 million working days are lost annually through alcohol related problems

Accidents: Most drownings in unsupervised bodies of water are alcohol related. Intoxicated persons tend to swim alone at night. Alcohol induces them to stay in the water too long, leading to hypertension and cardiovascular collapse.

Falls: Studies have revealed that at 100mg alcohol in 100 ml blood, surging occurs when standing. Slower reflexes and diminsihed co-ordination mean heavier falls.

Burns: Alcohol causes drowsiness. People can fall asleep while smoking. The condition also impedes speedy escape.

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