FRIDAY, June 23, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Excessive drinking is increasing for U.S. middle-aged women, according to a study published online June 20 in Addiction.
Rachel Sayko Adams, from the Boston University School of Public Health, and colleagues assessed whether age of first parenting was associated with excessive drinking (past two-week binge drinking and past five-year alcohol use disorder [AUD] symptoms) among women at approximately age 35 years. The analysis included 9,988 participants in the Monitoring the Future survey.
The researchers found that binge drinking and AUD symptoms were higher among women in recent than in older cohorts, with women from the 2018-2019 cohort having increased odds of binge drinking (odds ratio, 1.73) and AUD symptoms (odds ratio, 1.51) versus women from the 1993-1997 cohort. Across time, there was an inverse association observed between transition to parenthood and excessive drinking outcomes (e.g., odds ratios for binge drinking among those without children versus those who had had children at ages 18 to 24 years: 1.22 to 1.55). There was a concurrent shift toward delaying parenting seen in recent cohorts (54 percent of women in the 1993-1997 cohort had children before age 30 years versus 39 percent in the two recent cohorts).
“Subgroups of women at highest risk of excessive drinking appear to be expanding, probably supported in part by a trend towards delayed parenting,” the authors write.
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