Alcohol substance abuse programs have typically been aimed at the male population due to statistical prevalence of use and abuse. However, new research published in the BMJ shows good evidence to suggest providers should look at the young female population as an equal target to reduce harmful abuse. More than 68 studies with over 4 million subjects shows 20th century impact for abuse, achieves parity with women and men. Three search strategies were used to obtain this information.
- Amount and frequency of use.
- Prevalence and frequency of heavy use or ‘binge drinking’.
- Age of onset of alcohol use.
Given that the heavy users are relatively young, and have an early stage of alcohol abuse, providers should be encouraged to discover this via ‘basic health/wellness’ questions on a well-developed intake form. Questions about alcohol use, age of onset, and amount used, should be standard on every intake, to help change this alarming development in patient populations.