A recent story published by the Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel indicates Wisconsin was the state with the nation’s highest percentage of heavy drinkers — well above the U.S. median of 6.6%.
Wisconsin ranked number one, with 9.8% of residents considered heavy drinkers. Just what is a “heavy drinker”?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, men having more than 14 drinks per week, and women having more than 7 drinks per week fall into the heavy drinking category.
Binge drinkers are those who have more than 5 drinks in a day for men, or 4 drinks in a day for women.
“Heavy or binge alcohol consumption can negatively affect an individual’s health in many ways” according to David Smith, MD, vice president of Patient Experience and Care Management at Aurora Health Care.
“The impact on families, communities, and workplace are well known. The brain, nervous system, heart, liver, stomach, gastrointestinal tract, and pancreas can all be damaged by alcoholism. In addition, accidents and injuries related to alcohol use are much higher. We are placing a lot of emphasis on encouraging our caregivers to live healthy lifestyles, and limiting alcohol consumption is key to good health”
For more information on the impact of heavy alcohol consumption, visit these resources.
- Facts about Alcohol dependence
- Online alcohol screening tool
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
- Wisconsin Profile on Alcohol and Other Drug Use, 2012
If you or someone you know is battling addiction, contact Aurora Behavioral Health Services us — online or by phone at 1-877-666-7223 — as soon as possible.