Alcohol Use Safety Talk
There is widespread use of alcohol in the United States. According to the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 87% of Americans over the age of 18 reported they have had some kind of alcoholic drink in their life. The study also reported that 70% of Americans over the age of 18 have had a drink within the last year. While drinking alcohol occasionally in moderation does not have major effects on your health and life, excessive drinking can.
Excessive drinking includes binge drinking and heavy drinking. According to the CDC:
- Binge drinking is the most common type of alcohol abuse and is defined as consuming 4 or more drinks for women during a single occasion and for men, 5 or more drinks during a single occasion.
- Heavy drinking is defined as consuming: 8 or more drinks per week for women and for men, 15 or more drinks per week.
Many people fall into these categories. While it may not seem like drinking this amount of alcohol may be an issue it certainly can lead to problems.
Long Term Health Issues Related to Excessive Alcohol Consumption
- High blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive problems
- Cancer of the breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, liver, and colon
- Learning and memory problems- including dementia
- Mental health problems, including depression and anxiety
- Alcohol dependence or alcoholism
Short Term Issues
There are many other problems drinking affects in the short-term. Alcohol affects our decision making abilities as well as our motor skills. This leads to things such as risky sexual behavior, physical injuries due to falls, assault situations with other people, and motor vehicle crashes. When you drink too much, you do not make the best choices. Poor choices while being under the influence of alcohol leave many people injured, put into jail, or killed every single year.
If you are going to drink, it is important to do so responsibly. A spilt second decision under the influence of alcohol can change your entire life. Over the long term, alcohol abuse will negatively affect your health. Think about your health, your life, and your family before you drink the drink that puts you over the edge.
-How can excessive use of alcohol outside of work effect your job or our company?
–Presenter: Discuss your company’s drug / alcohol policy.