While many people might assume teenagers and 20-somethings will be the ones drinking unhealthy amounts this Christmas, shock new statistics have revealed middle-aged mums are the most at risk.
Last week, a study showed one in three mothers drink more alcohol than their grownup children, with 90 per cent shrugging off health dangers.
The festive season sees a sharp rise, with alcohol flowing at parties and gatherings. Shockingly, research shows alcohol consumption in Britain increases by 40 per cent in December and almost half of women are expected to drink over the recommended guideline of 14 units a week (around seven glasses of wine).
Jackie Ballard from Alcohol Concern says: “All over Britain, women will relax with a drink after a stressful day without realising the harm it can do to
their health. Our research has shown that for 93 per cent of women who drink, wine o’clock starts after 5pm.
“With drinking at home on the rise, and alcohol being so cheap and easily available, it’s become an everyday grocery item and many women think nothing of drinking most nights of the week. It’s often the case that a drink in the evenings is
“A drink to unwind can escalate into a problem”
ago-to habit to de-stress and forget about the worries of the day, or even to help people get to sleep. Women are also juggling busy careers with motherhood and that puts pressure on them.
“The run-up to Christmas is a busy time, so people drink more than usual as they celebrate.
But for women the long-term risks include developing cancer, high blood pressure and mental health problems.”
HITTING THE BOOZE
One mum who knows the dangers of excessive drinking is Emma Bushen, 35, from Maidstone, Kent.
She’s now been teetotal for four years, but at the height of her addiction, the single mum-of-three downed a litre of vodka a day.
Emma, mum to Luke, 18, Liam, 11, and Ami, eight, with ex-husband James, says: “When I was in the grip of addiction, Christmas used to be an excuse to drink. It was a stressful time so I turned to alcohol to cope. “My drink problem started after having my second child in my early 20s. I’d have a small vodka just to relax me, but then it spiralled. “I sought help and joined Alcoholics Anonymous in January and now I’m in control of my addiction. But I want to warn other women that having a drink to unwind can escalate into a serious problem.” Emma’s issues began aged 24, after she had son Liam.