It may be fun for a night and perhaps painful in the morning, but beyond that, heavy drinking is hard on the economy as well in a good number of cases where a hangover is definitely not the worst consequence.
- Excessive drinking cost the U.S. $249 billion in 2010, compared to $223.5 billion in 2006
- 2 of every 5 dollars were covered by the government, which totals to $100 billion
- Excessive drinking kills 88,000 Americans per year, or 1 in 10 between 20-64 years old
- 77% of the costs were attributed to binge drinking
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an average of 88,000 people die each year in the United States due to excessive drinking. It’s a worrying statistic that has only grown worse within the past four years. The CDC analyzed data between 2006 and 2010, finding that the costs for binge drinking have been raised by 11%.
It’s a major impact on the nation’s economy, not to mention the health of the population, and the risks of injury they expose themselves to. As found by the CDC, excessive drinking cost the United States $249 billion in 2010, which amounts to $2.05 per drink. That presents with a significant increase from $223.5 billion in 2006, with $1.90 per drink.
The costs refer to the damages that it causes the country and its population. It takes into account several factors that are influenced by excessive drinking, including property damage and health problems. As emphasized by head of the CDC’s Alcohol Program, Robert Brewer, this is a disturbing statistic, especially due to the economic recession during those four years.
Binge drinking, considered as five or more drinks for men, and four or more drinks for women, is reportedly responsible for 77% of those high costs. They were estimated around the price set for repairing the damage created by excessive drinking. For example, binge drinking that led to hangovers had cost the United States 77$ billion due to lost productivity.
Additionally, another $29 billion are rooted in the covering of costs that treated people with alcohol-related problems. Other funds had been dedicated to deaths, crime, and property damage, including vehicles destroyed during accidents.
The study has emphasized that it’s an alarming issue that is still growing in intensity. Excessive drinking is responsible for killing 1 in 10 Americans between the ages of 20 and 64 years old. It’s also one of the leading causes of death among teenagers when paired with car accidents.
According to the study, Washington D.C. presented with the highest cost per person, $1,526 compared with the national average of $807. New Mexico, on the other hand, had the highest cost per drink, of $2.77, in comparison to the $2.05 the national average.
In spite of these worrying numbers, researchers believed that the costs may be, in fact, even higher. Many of the alcohol-related problems go unreported, and data is not always readily available. This will require better preventive strategies to reduce the costs to both the country and the population.