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Thursday, February 29, 2024

European Countries With The Highest Prevalence of Alcohol-Related Issues 

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  • Russia has the highest prevalence of alcohol consumption and related issues in Europe 
  • Drinking related deaths are most prevalent in Belarus  
  • Latvia has the third highest prevalence of alcohol-related issues  

Research by Abbeycarefoundation.com analysed World Health Organisation (WHO) data from across Europe to determine which countries have the highest levels of alcohol consumption and also issues related to alcohol consumption. 

The metrics used to determine which countries are suffering the most with alcohol consumption were: Litres consumed per capita (15+), % of deaths in which alcohol was a factor and deaths due to alcohol use disorders (15+), % of alcohol use disorders within a population (15+), % of heavy episodic drinking over the past month (15+) and road traffic deaths due to alcohol (15+).  

The global average for alcohol consumption is 6.18 litres.

The average in Europe is 11.85 litres, meaning Europeans are drinking almost double the global average of alcohol.

1 – Russia  

Russia is the country that has the most alcohol-related problems from consumption to alcohol-related deaths, disorders and road accidents.

Russians reported the second-highest percentage of heavy episodic drinking over a month (60%).

Alcohol contributes to 21% of deaths and 14% of deaths were due to direct use disorders.

22% of road traffic deaths also involved alcohol.

These figures depict the social and health issues that heavy consumption is having on its population as Russia is the European country with the highest prevalence of alcohol-related issues. 

2 – Belarus  

Neighbouring Russia, Belarus also has issues with alcohol with 24% of deaths involving issues derived from alcohol.

2.76% of the population suffers from alcohol use disorders with 21% of deaths occurring due to these disorders, the highest in Europe.

Much like Russia, the figures show the dangers of the heavy drinking cultures that exist across Europe. 

3 – Latvia 

Latvia, is another Eastern European country in the top 3 of this list.

Latvians consume 13 litres a year per capita which is one of the highest levels of consumption in Europe.

59% of the population also claim they drink heavily episodically in a month which again is one of the highest levels in Europe.  

4 – Lithuania  

Next door to Latvia is Lithuania, which is the fourth European country experiencing issues originating from alcohol consumption.

With over 24% of deaths involving some form of alcohol-related complication, it’s not surprising that 62% of the adult population are reported to drink heavily episodically over the course of a month.  

5 – Ireland  

Ireland is home to many famous breweries and distilleries, it’s a country doused in a history of world-renowned beverages.

However, Ireland have one of the highest levels of alcohol use disorders with over 3% of the population suffering, and a staggeringly high 38% of road traffic deaths also involving alcohol.  

6 – Slovenia  

Slovenia is another country with a very high percentage of people who drink heavily multiple times over the course of a month (52%).

Much like Ireland, these higher-drinking countries have a much higher percentage of traffic deaths that involve alcohol (32%). 

7 – Estonia  

Estonians have one of the highest levels of alcohol use disorders with over 12% of the population reporting having issues with alcohol.

Alcohol also has been linked to 20% of deaths in Estonia and 12% of deaths are directly linked to use disorders.  

8 – Moldova 

Moldovans consume 12.85 litres of alcohol per capita, this is one of the higher levels of consumption and could be an indicator as to why 26% of all deaths have some links to alcohol consumption.

Moldova has slightly fewer road traffic deaths that are linked to alcohol (9%).

8% of the population also suffer from some form of alcohol use disorder which is one of the lowest in the top ten, but is considerably higher than much of Europe.  

9 – Poland  

Over 50% of the Polish population consumes alcohol episodically in a month, this high level of consumption seems to link to the high prevalence of alcohol use disorders, with 3.27% of the population suffering.  

10 – United Kingdom  

In the UK 40% of the population drink heavily and episodically over the course of a month.

Much like other countries this correlates to the 36% of road traffic deaths that involve alcohol.

There is also a high prevalence of use disorders with 3.42% of the population suffering. 

A spokesperson from Abbeycarefoundation.com commented:

“Alcohol abuse in Europe is a complex problem deeply rooted in the social and cultural fabric of the continent, and addressing it requires a multifaceted approach that takes into account both individual behaviours and broader societal factors.

“Drinking can be fun and alcohol can be consumed safely in moderation, however, the figures paint a much darker picture of premature death, mental and physical health issues and prolonged addiction or binge drinking.

“Alcoholism and surrounding issues can sometimes creep in due to outside factors such as stress, depression and social groups.” 

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