This is how excessive alcohol Women are at higher risk of developing alcohol problems due to the effects of lack of control caused by tension, anxiety or distress
A new study has shown that stress alone can lead women to drink excessively, while in the case of men this only happens when they are already alcohol consumers , according to its authors published in the journal ‘Psychology of Addictive Behaviors’.
Although rates of binge drinking are higher for men than women, women are catching up, and women are also at higher risk than men for developing alcohol-related problems .
Participants consumed alcoholic beverages in a simulated bar while experiencing stressful and non-stressful situations. Stress led women, but not men, to drink more than expected, a finding that demonstrates the importance of studying sex differences in alcohol consumption.
“Some people may intend to have one or two alcoholic drinks and stop drinking, but other people won’t. This impaired control over drinking is one of the earliest indicators of alcohol use disorders, and we know that stress contributes to both impaired drinking control and drinking dysregulation . This is how excessive alcohol The role of stress in impaired drinking control is poorly studied, especially in women,” explains Julie Patock-Peckham, assistant professor of research at ASU and lead author of the study.
The study took place in a research lab designed to simulate a bar, complete with a bartender, stools, and animated conversation. 105 women and 105 This is how excessive alcohol men participated and were randomly distributed into different groups, some of which experienced a stressful situation, with sensations of tension, anxiety or anguish, and others a non-stressful situation.
Next, half of the participants received an alcoholic beverage equivalent to three cocktails , and the other half received three non-alcoholic beverages. Afterward, all participants had unlimited access to alcoholic beverages from the bar for 90 minutes.
“We know that both genes and environment play a role in problem drinking. We can’t do anything with genes, but we can intervene with the environment. Stress and lack of control over drinking are closely related , and as stress is something we can manipulate, we check to see if stressors cause alcohol dysregulation,” says Patock-Peckham, who directs ASU’s Social Addiction Drives Laboratory.
The experimental set-up allowed the research team to determine whether stress, the initial drink, or a combination of the two caused the amount of alcohol the participants consumed. The team measured alcohol consumption in total number of drinks consumed and by blood alcohol content (BAC).
Exposure to stress led to increased alcohol consumption in all participants. The men who received a first alcoholic drink and experienced stress drank more than those who received the placebo.
For women , whether the first drink was alcoholic or not did not matter: Experiencing stress led to binge drinking.