A newly released report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) paints a grim picture for binge drinking in the United States. The CDC, which defines binge drinking as “men drinking 5 or more alcoholic drinks within a short period of time or women drinking 4 or more drinks within a short period of time,” said in the report that binge drinking is a much bigger problem than previously thought.

As it stands, more than 38 million U.S. adults binge drink approximately four times per month. Although college students typically get the most flak for excessive alcohol use, it’s the 65-and-older age group that binge drinks the most often, at five to six times per month on average.

According to the report, “Drinking too much, including binge drinking, causes 80,000 deaths in the U.S. each year and, in 2006 cost the economy $223.5 billion. Binge drinking is a problem in all states, even in states with fewer binge drinkers, because they are binging more often and in larger amounts.”

Read the rest of the CDC’s report

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, The Washington Post

Heather Rudow is a staff writer for Counseling Today. Email her at hrudow@counseling.org.

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