Alcohol Abuse – A Few Interesting Crime and Treatment Statistics

Over recent years, residential rehab centres for alcoholics in the United Kingdom have seen a significant spike in the number of people actively seeking help and advice. But at the same time, the bigger picture with regard to both alcohol abuse and the consequences thereof appears to be getting bleaker with every passing year. One of the biggest problems is the way in which on-going messages with regard to the risks and dangers associated with alcohol consumption are somewhat contradicted by the fact that alcohol is readily available on a 24-hour basis and has never been more affordable. When something is so easy to get hold of and comprehensively cheap, you automatically fall into the assumption that it must be at least reasonably safe.

And indeed it can be, but only when consumed sensibly and in moderation.  Which apparently is something that millions across the United Kingdom simply aren’t doing. The numbers of alcohol-related deaths and hospital admissions attributed directly to alcohol consumption are accelerating wildly all the time, with no sign of things slowing in the near future at least. The simple fact of the matter is that nobody is going to force any member of the public to take better care of their own interests and wellbeing – it all comes down to personal lifestyle choices.

So once again to help drive the point home a little more clearly, what follows is a quick round up of just a few key facts and statistics about alcohol-related treatment and crime in the United Kingdom:

1 – While very few UK adults genuinely believe that their drinking is problematic, the National Health Service argues otherwise. In fact, official estimates from the NHS suggest that close to 5% of women and a shocking 10% of men display at least some signs or symptoms of alcohol dependence.

2 – Free of charge help is available in the United Kingdom however research has shown that fewer than 7% of those who could benefit from professional advice and treatment actually access the care they require.

3 – Between 2011 and 2013, the number of people in the United Kingdom receiving treatment for alcohol dependency or abuse increased by only 1%.  During the same period, the number of recorded alcohol-related accidents, injuries, illnesses and deaths in the United Kingdom shot up by double digits.

4 – In the average year, somewhere in the region of 76,000 UK adults begin alcohol treatment programs. It is commonly assumed that alcohol treatment and rehabilitation are the kinds of programs sought very rarely and by a very few people, though in reality thousands begin potentially lifesaving treatment every week.

5 – It is estimated that for each £1 the UK invests in treatment programs to combat alcohol abuse and dependency, more than £5 is saved on crime, welfare and health costs.

6 – Accordingly to the most recent estimates from the government, crime related directly to alcohol consumption costs the United Kingdom an astonishing £11 billion every year. In addition, it was found that close to 70% of violent crimes take place during hours of darkness, with almost 50% happening at weekends. Around 20% of all recorded violent offences occur in or in the vicinity of clubs and pubs.

7 – Incredibly, almost 20% of those who fall into the bracket of adult binge drinkers admit having committed some kind of offense while under the influence of alcohol during the past 12 months. This contrasts sharply with the 6% of lighter drinkers who said the same, along with the 3% among those who do not drink at all. The correlation between alcohol consumption and crime having never been clearer.

8 – Harsher penalties and stronger deterrents may be having an effect, but drink-driving is still an enormous problem in the United Kingdom. In the course of a single year, drink-driving is the direct cause of up to 10,000 casualties, resulting in well over 200 fatalities that could easily have been prevented.

9 – When polled, the average UK adult was found to be entirely unaware of the specifics of UK law when it comes to drink-driving. Along with having no knowledge of current legal blood alcohol limits, most adults were also entirely mistaken when it came to the amount of alcohol they could consume and still legally get behind the wheel.