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Daily drink can lead to alcohol dependence

Monday, October 19th, 2009 Daily drink can lead to alcohol dependence

Experts are warning that women who regularly drink a glass of wine in order to relax may be in danger of developing an addiction.

Professor Ian Gilmore, one of the country’s leading experts, said that women who habitually drink a glass of wine at the end of the day to help them ‘wind down’ after a day juggling both work and family commitments, are in danger of becoming alcohol dependant.

They are also at increased risk of developing liver disease and other associated health implications.

Professor Gilmore believes that women are struggling to balance the demands of a career as well as family and this is a factor in the rising consumption of alcohol.

A survey conducted recently showed that around half of mothers drank at home at least three or four nights a week.

Professor Gilmore, president of the Royal College of Physicians, said: ‘Women in their role as mother or carer use alcohol to cope with exhaustion, anxiety, isolation and with stressful life events.

‘Alcohol is a sedative and a relaxant but used on a regular basis can really put people at high risk. Women are storing up a health timebomb by drinking this regularly.

‘My fear is that such women are at risk of developing liver disease or becoming alcohol-dependent.’

Professor Gilmore said women were more susceptible to alcohol-related problems because of their physical and genetic make-up.

‘It only takes five to ten years of being on a heavy drinking treadmill for liver disease to arise.’: he said.

He added: ‘There is a link between alcohol consumption, the emancipation of women and their bigger role in the workplace. Women feel pressure to compete with their male counterparts, especially in those industries which are dominated by men and are highly paid, such as financial institutions in the City.’

Professor Gilmore said that it was also much more socially acceptable and cheaper for women to drink in Britain today, compared to a generation ago.

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