Over the past few years, there has been an increase in alcohol-impaired driving. This follows a twenty year decline. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believes that this increase is due, at least in part, to a recent significant rise in binge drinking.
Binge drinking is defined as consuming 5 or more drinks for men and 4 or more drinks by a woman within 2 hours. Most binge drinkers do so about 4 times a month.
CDC director Thomas Frieden said that “at least 80 percent of binge drinkers are not alcohol-dependent. Yet binge drinking accounts for most deaths from alcohol.”
Binge Drinking Facts
- One in six U.S. adults binge drinks about four times a month, consuming about eight drinks per binge.
- While binge drinking is more common among young adults aged 18–34 years, binge drinkers aged 65 years and older report binge drinking more often—an average of five to six times a month.
- Binge drinking is more common among those with household incomes of $75,000 or more than among those with lower incomes.
- Approximately 92% of U.S. adults who drink excessively report binge drinking in the past 30 days.
- Although college students commonly binge drink, 70% of binge drinking episodes involve adults age 26 years and older.
- The prevalence of binge drinking among men is twice that of women.
- Binge drinkers are 14 times more likely to report alcohol-impaired driving than non-binge drinkers.
- About 90% of the alcohol consumed by youth under the age of 21 in the United States is in the form of binge drinks.
- More than half of the alcohol consumed by adults in the United States is in the form of binge drinks.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention