Alcohol use disorder is a big issue in Ireland, which has one of the highest rates of pure alcohol consumption in Europe, ranking second overall. Alcoholism is a major cause of death and disability, with an estimated 3 million people suffering from some form of alcohol problem worldwide. Of these, approximately 70,000 are residents of Ireland.
Ireland has been ranked number one in the world for alcohol addiction by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). In 2016, Ireland had the highest rate of adults (15 years and over) classified as heavy drinkers, with 2% of the population. This was followed by Australia with 1.5% and Canada with 1%. The UK had the lowest rate of heavy drinking, at 0.5%.
The majority of people who drink alcohol do so in moderation. However, approximately 8% of Irish men and 5% of Irish women suffer from alcoholism.
Heavy drinking is defined as consuming more than 14 units per week for men or 7 units per week for women. One unit is equivalent to 1 glass of wine, 1 pint of beer, or 1 shot of spirits. Oranges, apples, grapes, and potatoes contain high levels of sugar, which can lead to drinking too much if you're not careful.
According to the national charity Alcohol Action Ireland, Ireland is one of the 26 European Union countries with the highest per capita alcohol consumption rates. In reality, the Irish consume almost 20% more alcohol than the typical European. Over half of all Irish drinkers are thought to be problem drinkers. While most EU countries have seen drinking habits decline in recent years, Ireland has been an exception- particularly among men- and this trend looks set to continue.
At first glance, these statistics might suggest that the Irish are a nation of heavy drinkers, but that's not how we see it. Alcohol is such an important part of Irish life that when people come to live here they usually bring their own booze. And while it's true that we drink more than most people, we also eat less well and are more likely to die young from health problems related to our behavior.
The traditional drink in Ireland is beer or wine. We like our drinks! A 12 oz bottle of beer is considered a standard portion size, while a 5 oz glass of wine is used as a guide for how much you should drink. Of course, no one formula works for everyone, so feel free to adjust these amounts to suit your needs.
Outside of pubs, restaurants often offer a choice of beer or wine with your meal. The waiter or waitress will be able to help you choose something suitable.
If 80 percent of Ireland's 3.2 million adult population drinks, it means around 1.3 million Irish people have a drinking problem. The demographics are further broken out by researchers as follows: 40% of female drinkers and 70% of male drinkers engage in dangerous drinking practices. In Ireland, the expense of alcoholism is also substantial. It is believed to be the cause of nearly 100 deaths and thousands of hospital admissions every year.
In conclusion, there are almost 1.3 million Irish adults who suffer from a drinking problem. This amounts to 12% of the overall population. Of these, 90% are men and 10% are women. Young people between the ages of 15 and 24 account for 14% of all alcohol-related problems. This age group has the highest rate of risky drinking habits of any other demographic group.
Alcoholism is a serious disease that can lead to severe physical and psychological problems if not treated properly. If you or someone you know has a drinking problem, help is available. Contact your local treatment center for more information on how to get started.