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Are you up for it?

26 October 2004

Are you up for it?

The Alcohol Advisory Council (ALAC) is urging New Zealand drinkers to take a short quiz to see if their drinking is putting them at risk of alcohol-related harm right now, or in the future.

ALAC acting Chief Executive Officer Paula Snowden said last night’s TVNZ documentary on women and alcohol highlighted the dangers for women of binge drinking and she said the programme’s warnings were just as applicable to men. The documentary included ALAC’s DrinkCheck questionnaire.

“The DrinkCheck questionnaire can be used in the privacy of your own home to take stock of your own drinking,” she said. “It only takes a few minutes to complete and the results may surprise.

“Many people have their head in the sand over the risks associated with their drinking but by answering these 10 simple questions you can identify whether you are at risk of alcohol-related harm, either right now or exposing yourself to future harm.”

Ms Snowden said taking the quiz might prevent problems from developing into something more serious.

Ms Snowden who appeared in the documentary urged women who missed the programme to try and view a copy of the questionnaire.

“Adult women binge drinkers match men in the amount they drink and also in their attitudes to accepting drunken behaviour.

"Where women differ is that they are more likely to be concerned about their drinking habits than men but it's not stopping them from binge drinking. This is a significant concern for New Zealand women. Medical evidence is clear, women who drink like men expose themselves to much greater health risks as a result,” she said. “Socially the harms are also evident with things like unwanted sexual activity and poor family relationships.”

ALAC research shows adult women who binge drink tend to be Pakeha, in full time employment and have a personal or household income between $30,000 and $70,000. They are usually 25 years of age and over and have children between the ages of five and 15 years.

“This is a concern for women as parents because the children will be learning about drinking by watching these behaviours.”

They live in a large town or city. They usually drink at home between one and three times a week, and over a third have more than five drinks at any one time. They also under estimate significantly how much they are actually consuming.


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