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11 Facts About Alcohol Abuse

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Welcome to DoSomething.org, a global movement of millions of young people making positive change, online and off! The 11 facts you want are below, and the sources for the facts are at the very bottom of the page. After you learn something, Do Something! Find out how to take action here.

  1. Every year in the U.S., roughly 5,000 people under the age of 21 die from an alcohol-related incident including car crashes, homicides, suicides, alcohol poisoning and other related injuries.^[National Institutes of Health. "Underage Drinking." National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). Accessed February 26, 2014, http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/special-populations-co-occurring-disorders/underage-drinking.]
  2. Alcohol is a substance that impairs judgement when consumed and can lead to drinking and driving, unintended sexual activity, violence or other dangerous behaviors.^[National Research Council (US) and Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Developing a Strategy to Reduce and Prevent Underage Drinking; Bonnie RJ, O'Connell ME, editors. Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2004. 3, Consequences of Underage Drinking. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK37591/. Accessed February 27, 2014.]
  3. Men are consistently more likely than women to drink in excess and are 2 times more likely to be involved in a fatal alcohol-related car accident. Offer to be the designated driver for your parents and loved ones to ensure that everybody makes it home safe. Sign up for Parents Ride Shotty.^[USA.gov. "Fact Sheets - Excessive Alcohol Use and Risks to Men's Health." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed February 27, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/mens-health.htm.]
  4. 70% of 18-year-olds admit to drinking an alcoholic beverage at least once, while 80% of college-aged students report consuming alcohol.^[National Institutes of Health. "Underage Drinking." National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). Accessed February 26, 2014, http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/special-populations-co-occurring-disorders/underage-drinking.]
  5. Binge drinking is when a large amount of alcohol is consumed in a short period of time. For men, this is 5 or more drinks within 2 hours, and for women, 4 or more.^[Standridge, JB.; Zylstra, RG.; Adams, SM. (Jul 2004). "Alcohol consumption: an overview of benefits and risks.". South Med J 97 (7): 664–72. doi:10.1097/00007611-200407000-00012. PMID 15301124.]
  6. 18 to 34-year-olds binge drink the most. Binging can lead to unplanned pregnancy, car accidents, spread of sexually transmitted disease, violence or alcohol dependence.^[USA,gov. "Fact Sheets - Binge Drinking." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed February 26, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/binge-drinking.htm.]
  7. 2/3 of the high school-age students who drink do so to the point of intoxication.^[National Institutes of Health. "Underage Drinking." National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). Accessed February 26, 2014, http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/special-populations-co-occurring-disorders/underage-drinking.]
  8. Approximately 17% of men and 8% of women will be dependent on alcohol in their lifetime.^[National Institutes of Health. "ALCOHOL AND OTHER DRUGS." National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) Publications. Accessed February 26, 2014, http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/AA76/AA76.htm.]
  9. There are roughly 80,000 deaths that are related to alcohol abuse every year, making it the 3rd highest cause of death in the U.S.^[USA.gov. "Fact Sheets- Alcohol Use and Health." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed February 25, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/alcohol-use.htm.]
  10. Alcohol abuse can lead to long-term health issues like cardiovascular disease, cancer of the throat, liver, or mouth, anxiety and depression, dementia, liver disease and much more.^[USA.gov. "Fact Sheets- Alcohol Use and Health." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed February 25, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/alcohol-use.htm.]
  11. Alcohol poisoning is a short-term consequence of drinking in excess which can cause a loss of consciousness, coma, or death.^[USA.gov. "Fact Sheets- Alcohol Use and Health." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed February 25, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/alcohol-use.htm.]
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